The Idylwylde quartet, that also included Monica Graham, Sara Guy and Laura Masters for the Junior Provincials in Sault Ste. Marie Jan. 4–6, came up one game shy of taking the title in their first trek to this event.
But with Burns, Graham and Guy all still bantam-aged curlers, it will be quickly back on the horse for the local crew. Team Burns, with the addition of lead Cynthia Furlotte, are in North Bay Jan. 11–13, looking to navigate their way through the bantam regional playdowns.
Despite a 7-4 loss at the hands of the Tirzah Keffer quartet from the Port Arthur Curling Club in the junior championship final, Burns and company are sure to walk away with plenty of valuable experience.
The team finished with an overall record of 5-2 in round-robin play, closing with victories over Jenny Keetch (Port Arthur - 7-3), Sarah-Anne Guay (Kapuskasing - 11-7) and Megan St Amand (Port Arthur - 8-7) while falling 7-6 to Keffer in their first encounter.
The eventual champion and her rink of Sheree Hinz, Megan Westlund and Rachel Camlin were impressive from start to finish, triumphant on eight consecutive occasions, including the rematch with Burns on Jan 6.
Keffer and her rink will now head to Fort McMurray, Alta., site of the 2013 M&M Meats Junior Curling Championships taking place from Feb. 2-10.
A second Sudbury and area quartet also remained in the running as Brianne Manson, representing the Idylwylde along with Cassandra Rees, Courtney Andrey and Sabrina Frappier, posted a record of 4-3, with clubmate Robin Beaudry (Robyn Froude, Carolyne Graham, Avryl Evans) sliding in at 2-5.
The Northern Ontario junior men's bonspiel in Kapuskasing came right down to the wire, with Kurtis Byrd (Port Arthur), Nick Dawson (Soo Curlers) and Zach Warkentin (Port Arthur) all finishing with a mark of 5-2 after preliminary-round action.
Eventually, Warkentin bested Byrd 7-6 in the championship affair after sending Dawson to the sidelines with an 8-7 victory in their tie-breaker game.
Getting their feet wet within the junior ranks, the Tanner Horgan rink representing the Idylwylde (Dakota Allerston, Joe Greco, Jacob Horgan) won three of their seven outings.
Like Burns, Horgan and company will also get right back in the saddle, as the two siblings and Allerston bring in lead Martin Gravel for the bantam regionals noted above.
In other curling news, a total of five teams will duke it out for three spots as the men's east qualifier this weekend at the Copper Cliff Curling Club.
The field includes Dustin Montpellier (Copper Cliff), Mike Jakubo (Copper Cliff), Jordan Chandler (North Bay Granite), Matt Dumontelle (Horne Granite) and Robbie Gordon (Sudbury Curling Club).