Thunder Bay

Thunder Bay's team Northern Ontario ready to rumble at Scotties

Team Northern Ontario, based in Thunder Bay, is getting ready to battle it out on the ice at the county's biggest women's curling event.

'It's a dream come true,' says lead Sarah Potts. 'I actually can't believe it's finally happening'

Skip, Krista McCarville, third Kendra Lilly, second Ashley Sippala, lead Sarah Potts, and alternate Oye-Sem Won Briand make up Team Northern Ontario. (www.curling.ca)

Team Northern Ontario, based in Thunder Bay, is getting ready to battle it out on the ice at a major women's curling event. 

The Scotties Tournament of Hearts kicks off this Saturday, February 20 in Grand Prairie, Alberta. 

Sarah Potts, the 26-year-old lead for Team Northern Ontario, is looking forward to her Scotties debut. 

"It's a dream come true," Potts said. "I actually can't believe it's finally happening." 

Anyone familiar with Potts' family background will find her success easy to believe. She comes from a family steeped in curling.

Her parents, Rick and Lorraine Lang, are both world champions. Her mother is also the team's coach.

Despite their curling expertise, Potts said her accomplished parents are good about letting her play her own way. 

"They try not to give me too much advice," Potts said. "They want us to have fun." 

Team McCarville ready for 'tough competition'

Team Northern Ontario is skipped by Krista McCarville, who's returning to the sport after taking some time off. 

The team has been training hard at their home rink in Thunder Bay, anticipating a real "battle" on the ice at the Scotties, Potts said. 

Several upsets at provincial championships will make for an interesting mix on the ice, she added. 

"It's a very different field this year. A lot of the bigger names aren't there," said Potts.

"Everyone kind of wants to take this opportunity to put their teams on the map. So it's going to be a really tough competition." 

The Scotties Tournament of Hearts runs from Feb. 20–28. 

The Scotties winner will represent Canada at the world championship March 19–27 in Swift Current, Sask.

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