April 5, 2023

Dinos curling sweeps fans off their feet in return season as varsity team

Olympians Jocelyn Peterman and Brett Gallant lead impressive season and hopeful future for UCalgary’s curling program
Both the men and women’s teams with assistant coaches Heather Rogers and Laine Peters
The men's and women’s teams with assistant coaches Laine Peters, back row far right, and Heather Rogers, front row, far right. University of Calgary

With their first year as a varsity team, the Dinos curling team has swept fans off their feet with their impressive performances and dedication to the sport.

Spearheaded by Olympians Jocelyn Peterman and Brett Gallant, the Dinos curlers hit the ice as a team in fall 2022, training out of the Glencoe Club. 

“The idea of this team came from conversations I was having in Beijing during the Olympics. I wanted a team where the top up-and-coming players could be centrally located, all while pursuing a higher education,” says Peterman. “With the help of [Dinos athletics director] Ben Matchett, we got the team up and running, and it has been a crazy but very fun ride ever since.”

Tryouts for the teams were held in September 2022, and to Peterman’s surprise a lot more athletes showed up than they originally expected.

“Tryouts were interesting because you don’t usually go to open tryouts for curling. Teams are generally formed very naturally with those who live close to you, or you know within the community,” says Peterman.

The women's curling team with assistant coach Heather Rogers at the 2023 Canada West Curling Championship

The women's curling team with assistant coach Heather Rogers at the 2023 Canada West Curling Championship.

University of Calgary

When choosing athletes for the teams, Peterman and Gallant assessed skills and technique such as shot making and sweeping, as well as coachability.  

"We wanted well-rounded athletes for the team and were very impressed with the quality of players that tried out. There were definitely some sleepless nights trying to pick the five for each team," Peterman says.

Since there are no mixed doubles teams currently at the university level, the Dinos curling teams were made up of five men and five women. They began practising together not even a month later with the help of experienced coaches Laine Peters and Heather Rogers. Both coaches have Olympic coaching experience from Beijing 2022, bringing a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the teams.

With their eyes set on the Canada West Curling Championships in February 2023, the teams put in months of dedication and tremendously hard work practising twice a week on the ice, as well as additional strength training and sessions from a sports psychologist heading into the championship.

“The teams got a lot of value out of the additional Dinos support as it helped strengthen them both physically and mentally leading into competition. These sessions added a lot of benefit to our program this first year, and it is something we will continue doing moving forward,” says Peterman.

The mens curling team

The mens curling team.

University of Calgary

With their impressive skills and unwavering determination, the women’s team ended their season tied for third at the Canada West Curling Championships. The men’s team ended up winning silver, securing themselves a position at nationals. 

While the men’s team fought hard and gave it their all on the ice at nationals, the Dinos came up just short to miss a spot in the playoffs. 

Together Peters and Rogers coached the teams at the Canada West Championships and U SPORTS national championship events.

“Both teams had outstanding performances this season, and we are incredibly proud of them," says Peterman. “They exceeded our expectations at every turn, and we are very impressed with how well they represented the university.”

With anticipation for the next season already building, tryouts for the 2023/2024 team will be held April 6 and 7 at the Glencoe Club. Those who are interested can register for this weekend's tryouts

“I am really looking forward to continuing to grow and build this team. We’ve learned a lot as coaches and players over the last few months, and I can’t wait to take that into the next season,” says Peterman.

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