Chloe Fediuk, Alyssa Nedohin, and Allie Iskiw at World Junior Curling Championships (Photo – World Curling Federation)


Although it wasn’t a perfect day, Canada’s U21 continued to rack up wins Monday at the World Junior Championships in Lohja, Finland. 

While the women’s team skipped by Myla Plett dropped the first day of the game to Scotland, but recovered in the evening draw, stealing an extra end victory from Japan. 

The men’s team, skipped by Johnson Tao, added another win to their total, improving their record to 3-1. 

While draw weight was a struggle early on, Tao and his Edmonton-based squad of Jaedon Neuert, Adam Naugler, and Zach Davies eventually caught on and finished strong. While Canada trailed by one at the fifth end break, a quick score of two, and a steal put them ahead. They finished with a 6-3 victory. 

“While we had a slow start to the game, we really picked up our level of play in the second half,” said Tao. “There are a lot of positives that we will take forward into tomorrow’s games.” 

Tuesday’s schedule features two games for the Canadian men; against Italy in the morning draw, and Norway in the evening. The team is supported by coach Skip Wilson, assistant coach Ben Morin, and team leader Rob Krepps. 

The women meanwhile had two very close games today with mixed results. Tied without the hammer in the morning game against Scotland, the Canadians weren’t able to pull off the steal, and gave up a single to lose 5-4. 

Looking to recover in the evening draw vs. Japan, again it came down to the last rocks. Down one in the tenth end, Canada sat two before Japan’s Momoha Tabata made a tough runback to eliminate one of the Canadian counters. 

Plett, with Alyssa Nedohin holding the broom and Chloe Fediuk and Allie Iskiw sweeping, attempted a difficult angle raise, catching a piece – but not enough – of the four-foot, scoring only the single. 

In the extra end, Canada took advantage of a Japanese miss on Tabata’s first shot, to set up a steal opportunity. While Plett’s last draw slid a few inches deeper than they would have liked, Japan still faced a difficult shot to score.  

After overthrowing her first shot, Tabata overcompensated and came up light on her second, allowing Canada to steal to points and the 7-5 win.  

“It was so exciting for our team to be able to get a win against a great team like Japan,” said Iskiw after the game. “We just kept playing within ourselves and trying to make every single shot as best as we could, and you never know what will happen.” 

The women’s squad (coached by Blair Lenton, assistant coach David Nedohin, and team leader Lori Olson) have a single game Tuesday vs. Turkey, as the nine-game round robin continues. 

Just halfway through the event, both men’s and women’s team have already matched or exceeded the win total from last year’s world championship, which forced the squads to qualify through the B-Group championship in December. A few more wins would not only boost the playoff chances, but secure a top six finish and a guaranteed spot in the A-Group championship next year. 

Currently, the men are tied for second in their event, while the women are tied for third. The top four will advance to the playoffs. 

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