An end has come for the Malysha Johnstone rink and it wasn’t the way the team had hoped their fate would come to be.
The rink of Johnstone, Karlee Fessler, Kaitlin Corbin, and Mariah Jacklin lost in the A-B final at the Zone 4 regional juvenile women’s playdowns over the weekend and ended not only their season, but ended the foursome as a team. Johnstone moves on to university in the fall.
“We did okay, but not as good as we were expecting. We were very under-prepared because we haven’t had much time to practice in the past couple of months,” said Johnstone. “I just felt like we weren’t prepared to go play a lot of games and we weren’t curling as well as we should have been.”
The rink lost to Shelby Silzer twice over the weekend, but defeated the Hanna Anderson rink. It just wasn’t enough to keep their hopes alive.
“That team seems to always get us,” Johnstone said of the Silzer rink. “We were confident, but we didn’t want to over think things.”
For their coach, Al Bromley, he had high hopes for this rink that just formed this year after making some changes in the off-season. He was hoping this team would have made some noise at juveniles, considering the success they had a junior provincials earlier this year.
“I was pretty disappointed. I felt how they’ve grown this year as players…I expected that they would do much better against inexperienced, younger players,” he stated. “I don’t think they executed like they are capable of.”
Although Johnstone will be moving on to the University of Saskatchewan for school, she isn’t sure if she will continue to curl competitively or not, as she wants to focus on her grades.
Bromley has been coaching Johnstone for a couple seasons and hopes she will continue to curl even though she is moving on, as she has grown in the sport.
“I think she’s really grown as a curler and is a real student of the game in terms of her strategy and tactical skill,” he said. “She is a very strong player and has a long future ahead.”
Jacklin, Corbin and Fessler will probably stick together as a team next season, although the rink hasn’t had their off-season discussion yet. They have also been approached by an interested skip, but will look to make a choice later.
When this rink began this season, Bromley had high hopes they would succeed in both junior and especially juvenile, but many factors, including weather, illness and other commitments got in the way.
“When we started out, I thought this could be a pretty good team, but what ended up happening was a number of factors came up that prevented us from getting comfortable with each other,” he explained. “I don’t think they achieved the success I thought they were capable of, but I think there were so many factors that influenced that.”
A highlight for Johnstone: “I’m really happy with the season. We got to junior provincials, which was our main goal and that’s all we could have asked for.”