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Carleton curlers pushing for podium finishes at 27th Winter Universiade in Granada

OTTAWA (CIS) – The Canadian student-athletes who will make up Canada’s men’s and women’s curling teams at the 27th Winter Universiade in Granada, Spain have won at the university and junior levels, and are now ready to add a FISU podium placement to their list of achievements.

Representing Canada in Spain will be the 2014 CIS/CCA champion University of Manitoba men and Carleton University women. Carleton’s Doug Kreviazuk will coach the women’s team, while Manitoba’s Scott Grant will be at the helm of the men’s squad. Brian Chick from the Canadian Curling Association will serve as team leader.

Canada has accrued a combined five curling medals in four previous Universiade competitions, the most recent a third-place finish by the men’s team in 2013 in Trentino, Italy. The Canadian men (2003) and women (2007) have both been crowned FISU champions on one occasion.

The 2015 Winter Universiade runs from Feb. 3-14, in Granada, which is in Southern Spain. The curling draw begins on Feb. 5 and concludes on Feb. 13.

Men’s skip Matt Dunstone is joined by second Daniel Grant, third Jim Coleman and lead Chris Gallant. Dunstone and Grant curled together on the 2013 Canadian junior championship team. Coleman is a veteran of the Manitoba men’s provincial championship tournaments and Gallant has represented his home province of Prince Edward Island at the Canadian junior championship events.

Together, the foursome defeated the University of Alberta Golden Bears to capture gold at the 2014 CIS/CCA national championship. The Golden Bears were skipped by Brendan Bottcher, a former junior world champion (2012) who skipped Canada’s bronze medal team at the 2013 Universiade.

"The Manitoba team is a young team with lots of experience in big championships," noted Chick. "They play with a lot of confidence, and they’re not going to be afraid to play anybody in Spain."

Breanne Meakin, who skipped Manitoba to CIS/CCA gold in 2013, will now lead Canada’s women’s team and is joined by three members of the 2014 CIS/CCA champion Carleton Ravens in Lauren Horton (third), Lynn Kreviazuk (second) and Jessica Armstrong (lead).

Meakin, a four-time provincial junior champion, 2009 Canadian junior champion and former world junior silver medallist (2009), was added to the team after Jamie Sinclair left the squad.

"That Carleton team has competed in several World Curling Tour events this year and has beaten some of the best women’s teams in the world," said Chick. "They were fortunate to pick up Breanne, and especially lucky that she was such a good fit for the team."

"I have high hopes for both of these teams in Granada," Chick continued. "We’ve got a bunch of talented athletes who have already shown they can win in juniors and at the senior level. We’ve got players who are provincial and national champions and consistently play with, and against, some of the best in the world."

TEAM CANADA ROSTERS:

WOMEN

Position – Name – University – Hometown
Skip: Breanne Meakin – University of Manitoba – Winnipeg, Man.
Third: Lauren Horton – Carleton University – Almonte, Ont.
Second: Lynn Kreviazuk – Carleton University – Ottawa, Ont.
Lead: Jessica Armstrong – Carleton University – Ottawa, Ont.

MEN

Position – Name – University – Hometown
Skip: Matthew Dunstone – University of Manitoba – Winnipeg, Man.
Third: William Coleman – University of Manitoba – Winnipeg, Man.
Second: Daniel Grant – University of Manitoba – Winnipeg, Man.
Lead: Chris Gallant – University of Manitoba – Charlottetown, P.E.I.

STAFF
Team Leader: Brian Chick (Canadian Curling Association)
Coach (women): Doug Kreviazuk (Carleton University)
Coach (men): Scott Grant (University of Manitoba)

TEAM CANADA SCHEDULE (all times local / 6 hours ahead of EST)

Women
Feb. 5 (9:00): Canada vs. South Korea
Feb. 5 (19:00): Canada vs. Japan
Feb. 6 (14:00): Canada vs. Great Britain
Feb. 7 (9:00): Canada vs. Sweden
Feb. 7 (19:00): Canada vs. Switzerland
Feb. 8 (14:00): Canada vs. Spain
Feb. 9 (9:00): Canada vs. Norway
Feb. 9 (19:00): Canada vs. Russia
Feb. 10 (14:00): Canada vs. USA
Feb. 11: Tie-breaking games (if required)
Feb. 12 (9:00): Semifinals
Feb. 12 (16:00): Bronze
Feb. 13 (9:00): Final

Men
Feb. 5 (14:00): Canada vs. USA
Feb. 6 (9:00): Canada vs. Great Britain
Feb. 6 (19:00): Canada vs. Czech Republic
Feb. 7 (14:00): Canada vs. Switzerland
Feb. 8 (9:00): Canada vs. Russia
Feb. 8 (19:00): Canada vs. Spain
Feb. 9 (14:00): Canada vs. Norway
Feb. 10 (9:00): Canada vs. Sweden
Feb. 10 (19:00): Canada vs. Japan
Feb. 11: Tie-breaking games (if required)
Feb. 12 (9:00): Semifinals
Feb. 12 (16:00): Bronze
Feb. 13 (16:00): Final

CANADA’S ALL-TIME UNIVERSIADE RESULTS IN CURLING:

2013 (Trentino, Italy): Women: 6th / Men: Bronze
2011 (Erzurum, Turkey): Women: 6th / Men: 5th
2009 (Harbin, China): Women: Silver / Men: 6th
2007 (Turin, Italy): Women: Gold / Men: 6th
2005 (Innsbruck-Seefeld, Austria): Curling not part of Universiade program
2003 (Tarvisio, Italy): Women: Silver / Men: Gold

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