Monday, April 02, 2012

Curling Recap: 3/30/12

Career game #178: 2012 Winter League - March 30, 2012

End.......... 12345678 |TTL
Witcraft..... 40012001 | 08
Allen........ 01400110 | 07

Now is probably a good time to remind myself that in the 2011 Winter League, in which I played Skip and our team won the League Championship, I was the beneficiary of a lot of luck. In each of the first three games of that season, we trailed going into the last end, and won by one point. This season has been the flip side of that: we're 1-3 in games in which a tie or lead change occurred in the final end. Play enough games, and everything will balance out eventually, right?

Here is the other team's shot for the win in the 8th end: (Our team = red. Note: usual opposing team Skip Nick was ill, so usual Vice / substitute Skip Patrick gets the credit here.)

No shame in losing this way, right? He had the perfect line and the perfect weight. I had guarded the open lanes, leaving only the raise, which he made; can't guard everything, right? (Although my 2nd guard, rock #2, curled more to the inside than I would have liked. I wanted it to hang out more so that it would guard the raise more than the open lane; due to the ice conditions, I thought the raise might actually be an easier shot in this situation.)

On the other hand...well, for one thing, what are we doing guarding, anyway? Our shot rock, which were ultimately hoping would be the winning rock, was barely in the house. Sure, it was extremely well guarded, but still - do we really want to rely on that rock to get us the win? Well, the way I saw it, we could have tried to draw another one into the house on the left side, but we may just have given them an open hit for the win in the process, which would have been an easier shot than the raise they ultimately had to throw. So, I still think guarding was the correct call. I've gotten burned by giving the other team an open target before. (Ice conditions dictated that we couldn't really "draw around" any of the guards effectively.)

And, well, there's this: even though the rest of my team played well, I once again let the team down. I missed a hit for one in the first end, giving up four. In the 3rd end, we were basically in position to score four (maybe three?) before my turn even came up. In the 5th end, I was too heavy on a draw for one, and we gave up two. And in the 6th and 7th ends, I missed shots that could gave given us two instead of one (including a shot that was very similar to their game-winning shot in the 8th). I made a couple of good hits during the game, but any shot that relied on draw weight came up lame. And had I made any of those shots, that would have been the difference. But instead, once again, the other team's Skip made his shots whereas I did not.

So, no, I haven't been playing well, and there's no question I'm not playing as well as I was at this time last year. Do I miss having Amber on my team? Am I more tired than I used to be on Friday nights before having Marla? Does everyone just have a bad season every now and then? Yes, yes, and yes.

Well, either way, I am about 75% sure I'm going to ask to play Vice next season rather than Skip. Not because I haven't been playing well, but because now that the novelty of playing Skip has worn off, I actually have more fun playing Vice, win or lose. There's less pressure, you get to interact with your teammates more (as opposed to being all the way down at the other end of the ice all the time), you get to sweep, and as someone who is much better at hitting the broom than at draw weight, I think it suits my game better. And besides, there are enough people in the club who want to Skip as it is, I will be more than happy to make room for someone else to Skip next season. Of course, that could all change if we win our last two games...

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