Four Laurier alumni join current Hawks curler Megan Smith to compete for Women’s Championship
The 2021 Scotties Tournament of Hearts kicked off this past week in Calgary and will crown the top curling club in Canada. The annual tournament, which will be held in a bubble this year in Calgary, is loaded with plenty of Golden Hawk talent.
The tournament, which takes place over the course of this week, will feature four former Laurier curlers and current fifth-year Laurier student Megan Smith. Former Laurier student-athletes Laura Walker, Sarah Wilkes, Danielle Inglis and Margot Flemming will join Smith to compete for the most prestigious women’s curling trophy.
Walker is set to lead team Alberta once again after debuting last year with a 3-4 record. From 2008 to 2012, Walker led the Golden Hawk women’s curling team to two national championships. After failing to advance last year, her team is off to a great start in Calgary, with a 4-2 record, good for third in their pool as of now.
Walker has been impressed with the preparation by the leaders who have allowed for this tournament to continue throughout the pandemic.
“I actually think there’s a lot of really good things here, we’re so much safer,” Walker said to Sportsnet’s Jonathan Brazeau before the tournament began.
Sarah Wilkes is also set to play in her second Scotties after winning two years ago year with Team Alberta. The 2018 Laurier Hall of Fame inductee played as the third on Alberta when they were able to beat Ontario to win the tournament.
This off-season she joined Rachel Homan’s team Ontario and will compete with them throughout this week. Team Ontario leads the standings thus far with five wins in their first five matches.
Wilkes won three national titles through her time with the purple and gold and will look to add to her accolades with a second Scotties trophy.
Joining her on Team Ontario is former Golden Hawk curler Danielle Inglis. Inglis was able to win two national championships in her time with Laurier, playing two of those seasons with her teammate Sarah Wilkes. Inglis will play as the alternate on Ontario, while Wilkes joins as the second.
Margot Flemming, who played one season for the Golden Hawks in 2012 while losing in the provincial championship, will compete as the second on the Northwestern Territories Team, who has gotten off to a 2-3 start this week.
Megan Smith, who has played the last four years with Laurier’s women’s curling team, is also looking to make an impact as she will play in Northern Ontario this week. Smith benefits from the tournament this year as the field was adjusted to 18 teams due to the pandemic. Smith brings experience, having won a national and provincial title with Laurentian’s varsity team in 2017.
The 18 teams will compete in the Calgary bubble over this week with the top four teams in each pool advancing to the championship round. From the championship round, each club will battle each other towards the playoffs,with all eyes set on the top trophy in Canadian Women’s Curling.