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CCA announces 2014-15 National Team Program squads

Six men’s and six women’s teams will be part of the Canadian Curling Association’s National Team Program (NTP), it was announced today.

Teams skipped by Rachel Homan, left, and John Morris are part of the CCA's National Team Program for the 2014-15 season. (Photos, CCA)

Teams skipped by Rachel Homan, left, and John Morris are part of the CCA’s National Team Program for the 2014-15 season. (Photos, CCA)

The teams qualified for the NTP based on their standings on the Order of Merit following the 2013-14 curling season. As part of the NTP, the teams will have funding to cover some of the costs of competition and training, in addition to being able to access high-performance resources in the areas of sports science, sports medicine and coaching from either inside or outside of the CCA.

Here are the teams that have qualified for the 2014-15 National Team Program, in order of their Order of Merit standings:

Men
(Skip, third, second, lead)
Team Jacobs (Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.) — Brad Jacobs, Ryan Fry, E.J. Harnden, Ryan Harnden.
Team McEwen (Winnipeg) — Mike McEwen, B.J. Neufeld, Matt Wozniak, Denni Neufeld.
Team Morris (Calgary) — John Morris, Pat Simmons, Carter Rycroft, Nolan Thiessen.
Team Gushue (St. John’s) — Brad Gushue, Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant, Geoff Walker.
Team Koe (Calgary) — Kevin Koe, Marc Kennedy, Brent Laing, Ben Hebert.
Team Howard (Penetanguishene, Ont.) — Glenn Howard, Richard Hart, Jon Mead, Craig Savill.

Women
(Skip, third, second, lead)
Team Jones (Winnipeg) — Jennifer Jones, Kaitlyn Lawes, Jill Officer, Dawn McEwen.
Team Homan (Ottawa) — Rachel Homan, Emma Miskew, Joanne Courtney, Lisa Weagle.
Team Lawton (Saskatoon) — Stefanie Lawton, Sherry Anderson, Sherri Singler, Marliese Kasner.
Team Sweeting (Edmonton) — Val Sweeting, Andrea Crawford, Dana Ferguson, Rachelle Pidherny.
Team Middaugh (Coldwater, Ont.) — Sherry Middaugh, Jo-Ann Rizzo, Lee Merklinger, Leigh Armstrong.
Team Nedohin (Sherwood Park, Alta.) — Heather Nedohin, Amy Nixon, Jessica Mair, Laine Peters.

“The depth of curling talent in our country is amazing, and the international results continue to prove that,” said CCA Chief Executive Officer Greg Stremlaw. “We were the only country in the world to have no team finish outside of the top six in traditional four-player world and Olympic championship events last season, and the National Team Program has played a significant role in those ongoing successes.”

All 12 teams will be participating in the opening event of the CCA’s Season of Champions, the 2014 Canada Cup of Curling presented by Meridian Manufacturing, running Dec. 3 to 7 at Encana Arena in Camrose, Alta.

“As always, the objective of the National Team Program is to achieve podium results at international competitions, and we’re excited about the potential of the group of athletes that is part of the NTP for the 2014-15 season to continue to maintain those high expectations,” said Gerry Peckham, Director, High Performance, for the CCA. “Thanks to this program, these teams, based on their proven performance levels, will be given every competitive advantage possible to keep Canada contending for international medals.”