Chaelynn Kitz’s return to the Viterra Scotties Tournament of Hearts proved to be a memorable experience, in more ways than one.
Kitz, who hails from Oxbow, was the lead on the Sherry Anderson rink that finished second at the Scotties, which happened from Jan. 24-28 in Melville. It was the second time Kitz had competed at the Scotties, but her first time with Anderson, a Saskatchewan curling legend who has won the Scotties on numerous occasions.
On top of the on-ice team success, Kitz won the Marj Mitchell Sportsmanship Award at the tournament. Mitchell hailed from the Glen Ewen area, and in 1980, skipped the first Canadian entry to win gold at the women’s world curling championships. Mitchell died in 1983.
“I didn’t know Marj Mitchell was from Glen Ewen, which is 10 minutes from my hometown, so that made it just that little bit more sweet and awesome,” Kitz said. “We’ve gotten lots of messages from our family … and friends in Oxbow and area, saying that I’m bringing back the award to the southeast.”
Kitz takes pride in knowing that she was recognized for her play and her conduct on the ice.
It was a member of the media who used to live in Oxbow who pointed out the southeast connection between Kitz and Mitchell.
Kitz agreed to join the Anderson rink last year after the team found out that Aly Jenkins was pregnant and wasn’t expected to compete in the Scotties in 2020. Jenkins died from a rare childbirth complication in October, putting even more attention on the Anderson for the Scotties.
Team Anderson came together, and made it to the final, which they lost 8-5 to the Robyn Silvernagle rink, who won provincials for the second straight year.
“I love Sherry. She’s a sweetheart off the ice, but she’s so knowledgeable on the ice. It’s been awesome this whole year to learn underneath her. I’ve been a skip pretty much my whole life in the U18s (under-18s) and the U21s, and just to learn everything that she has to offer now for the future, when I want to move back up, it’s a cool experience.”
Kitz believes provincials was one of the best performances of her young curling career.
“It’s a curler’s dream to peak right at provincials, and I think I did that,” said Kitz.
She hopes she can remain part of the Anderson rink for next season.
But up next will be the mixed doubles provincials, which she plays with her boyfriend. They will be at a mixed doubles event in Saskatoon this weekend and Regina the following weekend, and then they will compete at provincials at the end of the month.
“Two years ago, we won provincials, so we got a green jacket, and in 2019, we lost the final, but we got to the mixed doubles nationals on points, so we’re striving for the green jacket again,” said Kitz.