Scott Furevick delivers a stone during the Neil Andrews Legends Classic final against Shawn Taylor at the Brandon Curling Club on Sunday afternoon. (BRUCE BUMSTEAD/BRANDON SUN)
The first bonspiel of the year for Shawn Taylor’s senior men’s curling team was a pretty good one, although it could have had a better ending.
Taylor, third Lester Vopni, second Gil Van Daele — filling in for Al Fitzmaurice — and lead Gord Campbell ran the table at the Neil Andrews Legends Classic at the Brandon Curling Club through to the final, but there they ran into Winnipeg’s Scott Furevick. The skips and thirds on both teams made some outstanding shots —be it in-offs, raises or perfect comearounds — late in the game to save ends and keep things close in an entertaining battle that Furevick won 6-4.
Taylor tried a straight raise takeout to tie the game in the eighth end with his final shot, but his rock didn’t curl enough and he gave up a steal of one and the game.
Despite the loss, Taylor remained upbeat.
"Definitely it’s nice (to get to the final)," he said. "The guys are throwing well. It’s nice to get a few wins under your belt early and it will help us going into the berth spiels. … It’s a good weekend."
Taylor’s Brandon team earned $1,200 for their efforts as well as $300 for their three round-robin wins. They beat Deloraine’s Murray Warren 6-3 in the semifinals and Neepawa’s Kelly Robertson 5-3 in the quarter-finals.
Furevick’s squad, which also went 3-0 in the round robin, won the $2,400 grand prize. Furevick beat fellow Winnipegger Ron Westcott 5-3 in the other semifinal and Brandonite Darryl Andrews 6-2 in the quarter-finals.
Beating former Canadian senior champion Robertson and competing with Furevick — both of whom were at senior provincials last year — this weekend has done a lot for the confidence of Taylor’s team and he’s hoping they can make a run at a title when provincials comes to Brandon in February.
"That’s what we’re aiming for," he said. "When you play guys like this and you know you’re in to the last rock of the last end of the final, it gives you a bit of a confidence boost. You know you’re right there with it."
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition October 21, 2013