Bonot snares provincial berth

They had to wait until the final draw with their own destiny out of their hands, but the Bryan Bonot rink earned a berth at the senior men’s provincial playdowns after going 5-2 in district play this weekend.
The Stratton rink finished second overall in the standings behind Gary Ball (6-1) of the Thunder Bay Curling Club.
The Bonot rink, consisting of Terry Lee, Ron Martinuk, and Ted Stewart, had their eye on two games during the last draw as they lost 7-5 to Don Macsemchuk (Kakabeka Falls).
They watched Don Brunton lose to Ball 7-2, which dropped the Sioux Lookout rink to third place and on the outside looking. A Brunton win would have forced a tiebreaker between him and Bonot.
“Losing that last match didn’t seem so bad after we knew we had second place wrapped up,” said Lee after they had reeled off five-straight wins after falling to Ball in the opening draw, including a clutch 9-8 win in 11 ends over Brunton in the sixth draw.
Brunton had won four-straight to open round-robin play at Nipigon but ended up losing his last three.
The provincials will run Jan. 10-12 in North Bay. It will be the third-straight trip there for the Bonot rink, but their first without winning the district playdowns outright.
Nevin Bonot’s rink, which also included Norm Hyatt, Glen Jackson, and Jim Jackson, finish fifth overall with a 3-4 record.
Meanwhile, in junior ladies’ district playdown action at Balmertown, Stratton skip Kelly Nielson dropped six-straight games after winning her opening draw to finish at 1-6, tied for last with two other rinks.
But their showing was an improvement from last year when Nielson went winless—and by wider margins.
“I’m so proud of my team,” she said of Amber Sheloff, Amy Nielson, and Giselle Bonot. “I think we played much better this year.”
Nielson now will turn her attention to high school competition as the Fort High student leads her rink into NorWOSSA play, which gets underway at the Fort Frances Curling Club next month.