The Muskie girls' and Rainy River Owls' boys' curling rinks passed their first tests of the season with flying colours this week.
Both squads put in an excellent two days of curling and topped their respective divisions at the NorWOSSA qualifier held on Sunday and Monday at the Fort Frances Curling Club.
The Muskie girls' rink, comprised of Ashley Payne, Jillian Cousineau, Daffni Chabot, Lauren Penney and Anna Peters, compiled a perfect 4-0 record over the two days to finish in first place.
“The girls did great, we had some close games,” enthused Muskie girls' coach Kim Beaudry.
“[There was] lots of competition, which is great.”
Fort High opened play on Sunday afternoon with a 8-3 win over the St. Thomas Aquinas Saints (Kenora) before following that up with a decisive 6-2 victory over the Sioux Lookout Warriors that evening.
Then after dispatching the Red Lake Rams 8-6 on Monday morning the Muskies dumped the Owls by a 6-3 count that afternoon to finish the event unbeaten.
The Owls' boys, meanwhile, compiled a 3-0-1 record over the two days to finish atop their division.
Comprised of Hayden Haw (skip), William Low (third), Carlin Drennan (second), and Carter St. Pierre (lead), the Owls opened play on Sunday afternoon with a 7-3 win over the Kenora Broncos before battling the Muskies to a hard-fought 7-7 tie that evening.
Then after routing the Whitefish Bay Winterhawks 13-1 on Monday morning, Rainy River ended play with a 5-0 win in the rematch against the Muskies in the 1 versus 2 game that afternoon to finish atop the division.
As for the Muskie boys, they compiled a 2-1-1 record to finish second in the division.
Comprised of Owen Riches, Jordon Bazylewski, Brett Schram, and Kian McEvoy, the Muskies opened play on Sunday afternoon with a 15-0 drubbing of the Winterhawks before battling to a tie with the Owls that afternoon.
Then after dumping the Broncos 10-5 on Monday morning the Muskies ended play with the setback to Rainy River that afternoon.
The Owls' girls, meanwhile finished tied for second with Red Lake with a respectable 2-2 showing.
Comprised of Kirsten Armstrong (skip), Micaela Jolicouer (third), Avery Kreger (second), and Erika Gerula (lead), Rainy River opened play on Sunday afternoon with a 8-5 win over the Warriors before bring thumped 10-4 by the Rams that evening.
The Owls then rebounded with a 10-5 win over the Saints on Monday morning before ending play that afternoon with the loss to the Muskies.
In mixed division play, the Muskies finished third out of three teams with a 0-3-1 record.
The squad, which is made up of Brayden Sabbe, Sadie Tolton, Emilia Saciuk, Julianna Rousseau, and Rylee Both, opened play on Sunday afternoon with a 5-5 tie against Sioux Lookout before suffering a handy 9-1 loss to the Rams that evening.
The Muskies then ended play on Monday morning with a 8-5 loss to the Warriors followed by a narrow 6-5 setback to the Rams.
Red Lake nabbed top spot in the mixed division with a perfect 3-0 record while the Warriors were second at 1-2-1.
Up next for the Muskies and Owls are the NorWOSSA finals on Feb. 9-10 that will be hosted by the Saints in Kenora.
NWOSSAA is set for March 8-10 in Longlac, with OFSAA to follow on March 25-28 in Uxbridge.