Plenty of Scotties experience from Atlantic Canada

A pair of favourites from the east coast’s competitive curling ranks advanced to the 2013 Scotties Tournament of Hearts with victories in provincial play Sunday, Jan. 27.

Mary-Anne Arsenault returns to the Scotties as skip for Team Nova Scotia (Photo CCA/Michael Burns)

The Nova Scotia playdowns ran Jan. 23-27 at the Halifax Curling Club and when it came down to the crunch, four of the most dominant names in Canadian women’s curling prevailed, qualifying for yet another Scotties. Colleen Jones, Kim Kelly, Mary-Anne Arsenault and Nancy Delahunt represent one of the most famous foursomes in women’s curling, winning four consecutive Scotties titles between 2001 and 2004. The legends of the game reunited this year, in a new configuration, with Arsenault at skip and Jennifer Baxter moving in to to fill the lead position. Kelly throws third stones, Jones is vice-skip and Delahunt is the team alternate. Arsenault defeated four-time provincial finalist Jocelyn Nix to move on to the Scotties. Nix downed defending champ Heather Smith-Dacey to reach the championship final. Suzanne Birt played her way to a seventh Scotties in the Prince Edward Island playdowns, Jan. 24-27 at the Charlottetown Curling Club. In a field that included Kathy O’Rourke and Kim Dolan – provincial representatives the past two years – Birt was undefeated in round robin play and defeated Dolan 6-3 in the Sunday final. Team Prince Edward Island includes third Shelly Bradley, second Sarah Fullerton and lead Leslie MacDougall. “You Gotta Be There” for the 2013 Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Kingston’s K-Rock Centre, Feb. 16-24, when the top teams in the country compete for the Canadian Women’s Curling Championship. Get your tickets now by clicking here.

Suzanne Birt (Photo CCA/Andrew Klaver)