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Jaster's Jabberings

About Chris Jaster:

Chris Jaster is the Brandon Sun’s sports editor.

  • Wheat Kings will be in tough in first-round series with Tigers

    The Western Hockey League’s regular season is over and the playoffs are about to begin this week, so it’s time to pull out my prognosticator’s hat. However, I must warn all readers that it’s rare that I’m bang on with my picks, so please don’t try to make wagers based on these.
  • Madhouse on Mountain getting wild

    If the last two games at the Yellowhead Centre have been any indication, Manitoba Junior Hockey League fans in Neepawa have been hungry to watch playoff hockey in their community. Through the first 29 regular-season games this year, the Natives’ average attendance was just under 386 people. Game 30 put it over 400.
  • Pattle's confidence growing on the slopes

    A lot of hockey players have rinks in their backyards so that they can play the game more often and try to improve their skills. Journie Pattle has something similar for her sport. The 17-year-old Brandonite has a starting ramp and a rail in her backyard to help her with her slopestyle snowboarding. Competitors perform moves on the rails and jumps during their run down the course in the sport.
  • St. Pierre-Laviolette heading to Europe to keep playing

    Victor St. Pierre-Laviolette tore up the Prairie Football Conference with the Regina Thunder last season and, if he has his way, he’ll be even more dominant this year. He doesn’t expect to be rusty when training camp rolls around in the fall, especially since he’ll be playing football again in April. The 20-year-old Crocus Plains graduate has been recruited to join the Uppsala 86ers of the Swedish Superseries football league. He heads out in just over a week for what he believes will be an adventure of a lifetime.
  • Jaster's Jabberings: Dyck, Prairie Storm show rural athletes just as competitive

    The Prairie Storm Athletics club is proving to be the little organization that could. Despite being a small club from rural Manitoba, the Neepawa-based organization is sending a competitor to the Simplot Games for the second straight year. Last year it was sprinters Charlot Butler of Brandon and Morgan Ramsay of Rivers, while this year it will be Daniele Dyck of Brandon competing in Pocatello, Idaho.
  • The community will miss the MSBL in numerous ways

    Just a few random thoughts for this week: • Last week’s news of the Manitoba Senior Baseball League folding wasn’t a huge shock but was still disappointing to hear. The senior AAA circuit had been struggling for years to keep teams in it. However, the league did bring some prestige to Westman. It was the only senior AAA ball played in the province, which kept the region on the national and international map as Manitoba’s representative at nationals would always be from here. It also brought some decent ballplayers from around the world to showcase their skills here as import players.
  • Jaster's Jabberings: Tournament of Champions continues to grow

    Organizers of Hockey Brandon’s Tournament of Champions have the unenviable task of trying to trying to keep the event from going stale. That doesn’t seem to be a problem as the tournament gets ready to drop the puck on its 48th edition on Friday. In fact, the event is growing, with new financial support, a new division and it some games will be played in a new community as well.
  • Granting Thomas and Wilson tenure a smart move by BU

    The Brandon University Bobcat men’s volleyball and women’s basketball programs have been in good hands for the last five years and they will be for a lot longer than that. Novell Thomas, the head coach of the women’s hoops squad, and Grant Wilson, the men’s volleyball bench boss, both applied for tenure and were approved for it by various levels of bureaucracy, up to and including the president of the university, who thoroughly vetted them. It was a smart choice by the administration and one that will benefit both programs in the future.
  • Jaster's Jabberings: Emotions aside, deadline deals were good for Wheaties

    It was a difficult week for some Brandon Wheat Kings fans. Although the team came away with four of a possible six points, it was the departure of goalie Jordan Papirny on Tuesday that sent a ripple through the Wheat City.
  • Hawrysh's season on the track comes to an early end

    Cassie Hawrysh was an alternate to attend the 2014 Sochi Olympics in skeleton but never got to made the trip. She dedicated herself for a chance to slide down the track at the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. If she makes it there, her perseverance will have paid off, but it may be an uphill climb to get there.
  • Krzyzaniak, Bell making marks with national women's teams

    There has been a lot of focus on Brandon Wheat King defenceman Kale Clague and the rest of the Canadian team at the world junior hockey championship for the last week, and it will continue through to the medal games on Thursday. As much as they deserve some attention, so do a pair of female hockey players from the southwest Manitoba who are also donning the Maple Leaf this week.
  • Compiling my Christmas wish list

    A lot of people have been making up Christmas wish lists hoping to get things they want on Sunday, and it’s time to get into that spirit as well. Although the list I gave my family was quite short, my wish list for the region is quite a bit longer:
  • Jaster's Jabberings: Big risk pays off with title shot for Harding

    Noel Harding took a big risk this year and it may pay off this weekend. Frustrated by only getting six fights since becoming a professional boxer in 2010, the Brandon Boxing Club owner, who turns 37 years old this week, wanted to increase his standing in the world. After defeating Lee Laquette in Saskatoon in February, Harding decided to ply his trade in Mexico, where boxing is more popular.
  • Locals fare well in big events at Westman Place

    Westman has created some big names in curling over the years, so it shouldn’t surprise many people to find out that every time Brandon has hosted a Curling Canada or world championship event since the 1980s that there has been a local representative in the competition. And all of them have had success here as well. It all started in 1982 when the Brier came to town and a Souris squad that featured skip Mel Logan, third Doug Armour, second Lloyd Lang and lead Allan Granger swept their way to a provincial crown and a bronze medal at the national men’s championship.
  • Canada Cup was more successful than anticipated

    Brandon and Westman should take a bow. The Home Hardware Canada Cup of Curling went off without a visible hitch and all early indications are that the first Curling Canada event at Westman Place in nearly 15 years turned out better than anyone expected.
  • Westman needs to pass Canada Cup test

    For as long as I’ve been in Brandon, the curling community has always felt one thing has been long overdue: The Wheat City hosting the Brier again. It’s not difficult to understand that sentiment. After all, the most recent Canadian men’s curling championship put on here was a huge success. Westman Place was packed to the rafters for every game and set a record for attendance with 106,394 people attending the 19 draws — which included two tiebreakers, the semifinal and final.
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