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Team Buchy off to mixed provincial curling championships in search of national berth

Kimberley Curling Club's Team Buchy will once again represent the Kootenays at the AMJ Campbell Van Lines B.C. Mixed Curling Championship
Team Buchy is off to the 2016 AMJ Campbell Van Lines B.C. Mixed Curling Championship in Qualicum Beach after winning the Kootenay playdown Feb. 6. From left to right: Skip Tom Buchy

Kimberley will once again be represented by Tom Buchy's rink at the AMJ Campbell Van Lines B.C. Mixed Curling Championships.

Buchy's rink, featuring third Lori Buchy, second Dave Toffolo and lead Robyn Toffolo qualified for the annual provincial mixed tournament Feb. 6 by defeating Trevor Qually's rink out of Cranbrook in the Kootenay regional playdown.

"It's great, every year we get together we hope to get through provincials because it gives you another chance," Tom Buchy said Tuesday.

With a decisive 8-1 victory in seven ends, followed by an 8-5 triumph in eight ends, Buchy defeated Qually in back-to-back contests to earn a trip to Qualicum Beach — host site for the 2016 mixed championship slated for March 3 to 6.

Buchy represented the Kootenays at the 2015 edition of the event, falling in the finale to Team Joanisse (Royal City/Gold Ears Curling Club).

"It would have been nice to win last year," Buchy said. "But that didn't happen. It's the start of a new year. We probably don't really look back at what happened last year too much.

"There have been other years where it hasn't gone too well, so it's just a new year."

Having finished second last year and previously claimed the provincial mixed crowns in 2006, 2010 and 2012, Buchy's rink once again stands as a contender heading into the 2016 championship.

"You've definitely got to be playing at the top of your game," Buchy said. "As in any provincial, you need a few breaks. The three times we've won, we played very well, but that being said, we also got a few breaks. That helps you along the way."

The winner of the 2016 AMJ Campbell Van Lines B.C. Mixed Curling Championship will earn a berth into the 2017 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship.

The 54th edition of the Canadian Mixed Curling Championship is scheduled for Nov. 14 to 19, 2016, at the Mariners Centre in Yarmouth, N.S.

"We are excited to be given the opportunity to host this national curling event in Yarmouth," said Rick Allwright, host committee chair and president of the Yarmouth Curling Association, in a Curling Canada release. "Yarmouth is well known for hosting great events and the opportunity to host this event within our arena is going to be amazing."

This will mark the first time Yarmouth has hosted any Curling Canada championship. The Canadian mixed championship has been hosted in Nova Scotia on two prior occasions, both at the Mayflower Curling Club in Halifax (1977 and 2002).

Buchy said his crew is particularly excited at the prospect of competing in Nova Scotia, having previously attended national championships in Whitehorse, Yukon (2007), Morris, Man. (2012) and Montreal (2013).

The 2016 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship was hosted at the Weston Club in Toronto (Nov. 8 to 14, 2015) and was claimed by Team Alberta, which prevailed over Team Saskatchewan.

Team Buchy wished to extend its thanks and gratitude to its generous community sponsors and supporters, including Stephen Rota Management Inc., Coal Valley Motor Products, Assante Wealth Management, Caliper Hydraulics, Canadian Tire Cranbrook, Maple Leaf Forest Products, ABC Country Restaurant, Prestige Hotels and Resorts, B and B Glass, Coors Light, Sun Life Financial - Frank Vanden Broek, Kootenay Insurance Services, Remax Caldwell Agencies, Tyee Homes and the Kimberley Curling Club.