I was lucky in my formative curling years, as were many American markets around the Great Lakes, to have access to Canada’s CBC to watch curling on TV. It was all-Canadian curling, of course. Our quaint nation had competitive curling too, but it hadn’t quite hit the airwaves. Although I recall one national championship match that was tape delayed and packaged into a short recap for NBC, which turned out to simply be a highlight reel of the last rock of each end. That was, to put it mildly, unsatisfying.
Fortunately our country has caught up with the times and while NBC still airs curling in some nether regions of their programming, and coined the 30 Rock-esque phrase “Curling Night In America,” our national championships are provided worldwide thanks to 12th End Sports network (TESN). They began this project in 2012, and not a year too soon, because while largely underwatched it provided us with one of the most legendary games – and shots.
The 2012 national women’s semifinal between teams skipped by Aileen Geving and Cassie Potter was a barnburner. Potter stole consecutive three-enders, building a 9-2 lead, but Geving (maiden name Sormunen) roared back with a deuce/force/deuce and their own steal of three, setting up a 10th end down just 10-9 without hammer. The entire 10th is still available online and is a worthwhile watch. At over 20 minutes in length, you know it’s a terrific end for fans and a horrible end for the athletes.
Indeed, we had rocks everywhere and rotating situations of who was sitting shot stone. On Geving’s last rock, she threw one for the ages, against the unrelenting clock no less: a quintuple-raise double, leaving her team counting two with last rock coming. In response, Potter’s hammer was perhaps a millimeter away from being too wide, yet it in-offed just enough to push her yellow rock closer by an inch after a measure.
You can jump to the 15-minute mark of the video if you wish to speed past the havoc and be like NBC in the mid-2000s.