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Ryan McNeil-Lamswood picks up sportsmanship award in fourth-place finish on national curling stage

Mark Finley photo
Stephenville native Ryan McNeil-Lamswood releases a rock against Ontario in its first playoff win during the 2018 national Under-18 men's curling championship in Saint Andrews, N. B. over the weekend.
Mark Finley photo Stephenville native Ryan McNeil-Lamswood releases a rock against Ontario in its first playoff win during the 2018 national Under-18 men's curling championship in Saint Andrews, N. B. over the weekend. - Submitted

Fourth in the country in his fifth national curling appearance.

That would explain why Ryan McNeil-Lamswood is bursting with pride.

The 18-year-old Stephenville native, playing the role of skip for a team based out of the Re/Max Centre in St. John’s, finished fourth at the 2018 national Under-18 men’s curling championship at the W. C. O’Neill Arena Complex in Saint Andrews, N.B. over the weekend.

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“I just feel really proud that we were able to show that Newfoundland is not really a province you can push over … that Newfoundland was able to kind of be a force to be reckoned with throughout the tournament,” McNeil-Lamswood said Monday.

His rink, which included St. John’s curlers third Coleton Vriesendorp, second James Trickett and lead Alex Phillips, under coach Laura Phillips, dropped a 4-1 decision to defending champion Northern Ontario in the showdown for bronze.

The foursome finished with a 4-1 record in round-robin play and then earned a berth in the semifinal by winning two of their first three games in a double knockout championship round.

McNeil-Lamswood and company lost 6-2 to the eventual champions from Nova Scotia in its semifinal matchup in Saint Andrews.

It was his best performance ever in what was his fifth national curling appearance and he credits the win to the team sticking with its goals and being patient throughout the tournament.

Before each game, he said, the guys discussed what their goal would be with each rock thrown and where they would pick the spots to take advantage of any opportunities.

“The execution of that was done really well,” he said.

His skillset as one of the budding curlers in his home province is evident by his ability to throw stones with the best from coast to coast, but McNeil-Lamswood has become one of the most respected young curlers for his sportsmanship and it didn’t get go unnoticed in Saint Andrews because he was chosen by the officals as the Fair Play skip for the male portion of the 2018 championship — just the second national tournament for the U18 age group.

Next year he will be gunning for a chance to play on the national stage for a sixth time when he throws rocks with the Daniel Bruce foursome out of the Corner Brook Curling Club.

An impressive resume for a young man set to graduate from high school in June.

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