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Lee rink off to Kelowna

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First, she went out and pulled off an upset win at the “Northwesterns” in Rainy River last month.

Then last Sunday, she went a step further and pulled off an impressive win in the final of the Northern Ontario junior women’s playdowns in Iroquois Falls.

So what’s next for Angela Lee and her Stratton rink? She hopes a national title—and why not?

Lee dominated the field at the provincial showdown, compiling a 5-1 record in the double round-robin portion and then doubling Angie Bailey (Copper Cliff) 8-4 in the final to earn a berth at the national junior championships Feb. 6-14 in Kelowna, B.C.

Lee said the key to their victory against Bailey came in the second end when they scored three times to take a 3-1 lead, helping the young skip shake off the affects of a missed shot in the first.

Then leading 5-3 after six ends, Lee scored a deuce in the seventh and stole one in the eighth to grab a commanding 8-3 lead. Bailey could only reply with one in the ninth before being run out of rocks in the 10th.

Lee went undefeated in the first portion of the round-robin with victories over Julie Risi of Port Arthur (7-5), Dawna Premo of Sault Ste. Marie (8-6), and Bailey (9-5).

She dropped her first game of the second half of the round-robin 7-5 to Risi but then rebounded with convincing wins over Bailey (11-4) and Premo (7-4) to finish in top spot—and earn a bye to the final.

Bailey advanced to the final with an 8-7 extra-end win over Risi in a tie-breaker (both rinks had finished in second place after the round-robin with 4-2 records).

Now Lee, 17, is taking her rink of third Lisa Bolen, second Danielle Shrumm, and lead Sarah Boily to the nationals in just her first year as skip at the junior level.

Last year, she played third on a rink that included her sister, Andrea, and Jackie Bonot, also of Stratton. Ironically, Bonot’s rink (now curling out of the Port Arthur club in Thunder Bay) was one of the teams she had to beat in Rainy River in order to advance to the provincials at Iroquois Falls.

Lee has taken full advantage of her new position as skip, and showing everyone just how good she really is.

“We’re pretty surprised,” Lee said from her home Monday night. “We curled well at the associations and we just wanted to keep that up at the provincials.

“The more we go out as a team and curl together, we learn more about each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” she added.

Lee said their rink, coached by her father, Terry, will go out and try to play the same way in Kelowna as they did on the sheets in Rainy River and Iroquois Falls.

“It’s a totally new experience. None of us have ever been at the nationals but the whole team has curled really well,” said Lee, who was named the all-star skip at the provincials while her dad was dubbed the top coach there.

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