For the ninth straight year, Prince Edward Island has won individual awards at the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Junior Curling Championships.
Jonathan Schut, lead for the Tyler Smith team, and Katie Fullerton, mate for the Veronica Smith team who threw lead rocks, were honoured during the Saturday’s award ceremony in Fort McMurray, Alta. It also marked the 12th time this century in which Island curlers have brought home some hardware, with 2004 being the only year they came up empty.
Schut was the winner of the Joan Mead Legacy Award, which is selected by event officials and carries a $500 scholarship.
Fullerton, earned a second-team all-star berth for the second-best shooting percentage for competitors throwing lead stones.
“Receiving this award was a tremendous honour,” said Schut. “It is only awarded to one male and one female athlete every year. When my name was announced as the recipient, I was overwhelmed. I am honoured . . . and it will always be a cherished memory from my experience at nationals.
“In order to be eligible for the award, you must submit an essay to the selection committee at the beginning of the event,” he explained. “Upon submission of the application, the applicants are reviewed and watched throughout the tournament. I am incredibly humbled and honoured to be the 2013 recipient.”
“I have always viewed curling as one of the greatest sports. I have always found that my competitors in curling have exhibited incredible sportsmanship and poise in the sport,” added Schut, who also thanked his parents for the incredible love and support. “Curling is a great sport, and I would honestly encourage people to get involved as it provides so many opportunities that other sports do not. The social aspect of the game is so much more than any other sport, and I have always cherished that.”
Fullerton was also very humble about her honour, and thanked her family, teammates and coaches.
“I was so excited to earn an all-star award. I know I played my best during the whole event, and my hard work paid off. It feels amazing to be ranked as one of the best junior curlers in Canada.”
She added her 77 per cent shooting was so high, and second only to a 78 per cent, “because I knew how to stay calm, relaxed and focused while preparing for my shots.
“If I ever felt overwhelmed, I’d say a quick prayer or take a deep breath and be on my way. I also put a lot of trust in my sweepers to finish making my shots . . . and I trusted my skip with the line call and ice selection. Every shot I made was a team effort.”