Saskatchewan ninth at Nationals
Team Sask finished up in ninth place overall in the Canada Cup standings at the 2016 NDFC Adult Nationals.
Some of our players had a good run in the round robin sections, including Bonnie Lapierre who advanced to the first round. A couple of our teams were in 4th-place playoffs, but it was not meant to be our year.
What we do at SDA
Nationals were played June 14-17. The winning province this year is Nova Scotia.
Ashtin Bear fifth at Canadian Open
Provincial Champion Ashtin Bear of Prince Albert wowed the crowd at the Canadian Open in Richmond BC on June 18 as he played to a respectable joint fifth place.
Ashtin was knocked out in a seven-leg thriller by John Norman of Newfoundland and Labrador. The eventual winner was Kiley Edmonds of Nova Scotia. Women's champ is Karrah Boutilier, also Nova Scotia. A nice run by Ashtin and now Nationals is over, our players get a well-deserved summer break.
Full results from Nationals and the Canadian Open will be posted on the NDFC web page.
Stars added to Nationals roster
Let's meet two players we haven't profiled before. First up, Steve Kristjansson.
Soft-tip, steel-tip, who's counting?
Saskatoon's latest addition to the Saskatchewan darts team qualified for Nationals at his first try. Steve, 42, has been playing since he was about 12 years old, and has played nine years in the Wednesday Night Darts League, but this is his first year of playing tournaments. And it's been going quite well so far.
Steve says he made three finals before finally winning his first tournament at Rosetown's Spring Shoot. But that was just the beginning. Steve went on to provincials as a ranked player and performed well to a fifth-place finish.
Steve is also the first Saskatchewan player (that we know of) to qualify for NDFC Nationals and make Team Canada in the soft-tip arena, in the same year. Steve will represent Canada at the 2016 International Challenge in Las Vegas. His teammates will be Cory Tkach of Manitoba, Trevor Gilchrist and Chad Lutz, both Regina. Good luck to them all!
At the traditional dartboard, Steve throws 23g Brent Casey darts with Pentathlon flights. He says he likes them for the super aggressive grip.
Steve says that he has met people from all over the world by playing darts and made some good friends. His partners at Nationals will be Aaron Hamilton and Laurie Unger, both Nipawin products.
All the best at Nationals, Steve, and make sure they spell your name right!
Our second profile is of a legend of Saskatchewan darts who has made the trip from pub team player to Team Saskatchewan to SDA executive to SDA President to SUDO organizer and now back to Team Sask player again, this time with winning on her agenda. Let's meet Elaine Walker.
As Elaine tells it, her start in darts was inauspicious, but she couldn't have asked for a better initiation team-mate-wise. "In 1989, I was working as a waitress in the Five and Dime on Saskatoon's east side." (Wow, the beer prices really were so much better in those days. -ed)
"Al Heminger, Ed Taylor and Mike Hendy were putting a team together," she says, "and they said, 'we need a woman, and you're it!'" The Monday Night League requires at least one team member of the opposite gender. Fortunately for Elaine, those three men were all provincial team players at the time. "So yeah, I learned my outs!" she says.
Elaine played league for several years then took a time out - for five years. Then she came back with gusto and made the provincial team in 2000 (pictured left). She also finished joint 9th in the Golden Harvest that year. The Harvest, a huge milestone in Saskatchewan darts history, was a world-ranked tournament played from 1997-2003 in Saskatoon, and won by the likes of Phil "The Power" Taylor, but that's another story. Elaine is even in the Golden Harvest Hall of Fame. How many of us can say that?!
Elaine was a force in the early 2000s era, winning several tournaments. Then, as luck would have it, she had to quit playing for about eight years for medical reasons, and moved over to the executive side.
Elaine's achievements as an organizer are nothing short of outstanding. Not only did she take a leading role in organizing NDFC Nationals in Saskatoon in 2002 and 2007, but it was Elaine who brought our Association back from the brink after major difficulties in 2003. The SDA had as good as lost its Sask Sport ties and was financially up the creek. "With Laurie Kitzul's help, we got the executive and Sask Sport back on track," says Elaine. More than that, she was instrumental in making our Association what it is now. Elaine was SDA President from 2003-2008, and the Association is in great shape to this day, building on what she started. Elaine continues to organize darts in Saskatoon as SUDO president, a position she has held for some 16 years.
Back to the oche. For the last few years, Elaine played only casual darts in Saskatoon leagues. That is, until 2016. "My first tournament in 15 years was the 2016 Main Event, and I got joint fifth," she says. A week later, and she was playing in the finals at the 2016 Provincials.
Elaine is going to Nationals as our number two player, partnered with 20-time champion Bonnie Lapierre and former champion Jason Skinner in the doubles events. "It's very exciting to be going and playing with those partners, and I love the Nationals atmosphere," she says. Elaine throws 24g darts.
Elaine is a winner in more ways than one and we wondered how she does it. "I guess it's my drive and determination," she says. "I'm totally focussed during the game, I don't talk to anyone, I'm in the zone." She is keen to get to Nationals and will be there early to play the pre-tournaments. "I just want to throw like I can and you know what, I'm going there to win!"
Nothing would surprise us where you're concerned, Elaine. Go get 'em!
Saskatchewan junior boys win national doubles
Saul Arndt (Regina) and Jaymes Swenson (Prince Albert) took it to the stage on the opening day of Youth Nationals May 20 and won the NDFC junior boys' doubles title in Richmond, BC. Great darts!
On May 21, Saul Arndt won the Americas Cup qualifier, entitling him to represent Canada at the U-17 level in Barbados this July - great job!
Then, on May 22, 16-year-old Saul teamed up with Rianna December of Saskatoon to make the stage and win silver in junior mixed doubles. Saul adds his two medals this year to his previous two, and that's Rianna's second medal as a junior rep. Way to go!
To round off an excellent tournament, Saul Arndt went on to win the World Masters qualifier, which earns him a place at the U-18 BDO World Masters in London, England in November. Saul, who was appearing at Nationals for the seventh time, is pictured right. A fantastic achievement by the lad from Regina!
Team SK 2016 also includes Josh Grenier, David Pelly, Lyneta Grenier, Clover Arndt and Shaukeena McKay.
The team were accompanied to Richmond by SDA Youth Director Shawn Solomon, SDA President Pat Copeman and chaperons Judy and Ken Cleaveley. The Youth Nationals wound up Sunday evening, May 22 with the banquet and awards. Full results will be posted on the NDFC web site.
Moose Shoot results
Local star Curt Gamble took the 2016 Moose Shoot men's title with a win over Saskatoon player Eric Matheson in the final.
Becky Arndt of Regina came out on top of the women, defeating Dakota Roberts. Over in the doubles, Team SK reps Bonnie Lapierre and Elaine Walker teamed up to win the women's, while Regina's John Brann and Jim Dennis take men's. Full results from Moose Jaw soon.
Riders 2016 football pool tickets go on sale
The 2016 Riders football fundraiser is your chance to raise money for our association, win prizes, and watch the Riders all at the same time!
Tickets are $20 for the whole CFL season, with one draw in each regular season game as well as the playoffs and Grey Cup Final. We paid out $3,850 in prizes in 2015. See your zone director to buy tickets and also if you want to become a ticket seller. And Go Riders!
We regret to inform our readers of the loss of an ever-popular player, Paul Ottey, who passed away May 5.
Originally from England, Paul settled in Canada after a career in the British Army.
Paul was well known to Saskatoon leagues. He played in all of them for many years and attended SDA tournaments and provincials from the 1980s until serious illness prevented it in recent years. Paul represented his province at NDFC Nationals in 1996. He was a great motorcycle enthusiast and avid soccer fan.
We offer our condolences to his wife Sherry and his children Gillian and Shea.
Flin Flon hits it big
The North East zone held its annual three-day tournament April 29 - May 1 and did some major fund-raising. With a report, here's Brian Humphreys:
"We had a great tournament with over 60 players participating in the six events. Two youth players won the $100 for the highest finishing youth, Orivis Campbell and Campbell Owen.
"Ron Looker cleaned up by winning the singles, doubles with Dean Corlett
and triples with Trish Wark. Trish also won the ladies’ singles and
doubles with partner Donna Guimond over Judy Cleaveley and Rita Larsen. " - Brian Humphreys
" - Brian Humphreys
Pictured above are Dean Corlett, Trish Wark, club president Gwen Blatz and winner of three events Ron Looker. Full results soon.
Saskatoon darts stars go on live TV
Players from Saskatoon representing Saskatchewan at Nationals featured in a live TV broadcast on Global Morning May 4 to give some excellent promotion to our sport.
Global news reporter Joelle Tomlinson met with Elaine Walker, Laurie Kitzul, Eric Matheson, Rianna December and Karsten Larsen. You can see clips from the interviews on the Global site - Elaine has posted a link on the SDA Facebook page. Great job guys!
Provincials 2016: Bonnie hits 20, Ashtin wins men's
The new men's provincial champion and youngest ever to do it is Ashtin Bear of Prince Albert. Bonnie Lapierre of Regina wins the women's event for an incredible 20th time.
Here are the top finishers:
This year the Zone Cup went to Prince Albert, followed by 2. Stanley Mission, 3. Regina and 4. Moose Jaw.
Main Event draws top shots
Men's champion and $1,000 better off is Dave Cameron of Nova Scotia, who defeated Manitoban Rory Orvis in the final. The finalists are pictured left.
Women's champion Roxanne Vantassel of Northern Ontario beat Kim Bellay-Rousselle of British Columbia to take the $500 first prize. That's Roxanne and Kim on the right.
Roxanne teamed up with Cathy Kerrigan of Saskatoon to take the women's doubles. They're pictured right.
In the men's doubles it was Shawn Currie and Shawn Burt of Alberta (far right) who came out on top.
In the mixed doubles event on the first morning, local player Rita Larsen partnered Dave Cameron to a first place finish. They're pictured below left.
The previous evening Danny Mckenzie of Stanley Mission and Eric Matheson of Saskatoon were partnered up and went all the way in the blind draw competition. Danny and Eric are pictured right.
Tournament organizer (and joint fifth-place woman) Elaine Walker says it was a fantastic turnout, and she offers a big "thank you" to everyone who supported the tournament, including all the players that travelled and the volunteers who helped with setting up and running everything.
"Without you all," says Elaine, "it would not have been such a great success."
Elaine says, "there were some pretty amazing darts thrown this weekend and it was a real pleasure to watch. Congratulations to all the winners and I hope to see everyone back again next year."
Other notable Saskatchewan results were Cathy Kerrigan's third in women's singles and the third place by Ashtin Bear and youth player Rianna December in the mixed event.
Steve wins first, Judy on form
Steve Kristjansson (far left) of Saskatoon won his first SDA-ranked tournament in a close one at the Rosetown Spring Shoot March 19.
In the final leg of a best-of-seven final, Steve hit a 98 out shot to defeat Jason Skinner who had just missed the third dart of a 136 out. Steve's win moves him up to second in the SDA rankings.
Top-ranked woman player Judy Cleaveley of Hudson Bay just keeps rolling on with Provincials coming up. Judy, pictured left, defeated youth phenom Rianna December in the final.
Women's doubles went to the Saskatoon team of Stacey Stephanson and youth player Rianna December, pictured right.
Over in the men's it was Karsten Larsen and Austin Morrison, also Saskatoon (far right).
You can see the full Rosetown results here Photos courtesy Trish Gray
Eric repeats at Icicle; Dakota makes it four
Eric Matheson of Saskatoon repeated his 2015 win at the Icicle Open men's event in North Battleford March 5, with a win over Steve Kristjansson, also Saskatoon.
Meanwhile, youth sensation Dakota Roberts of Prince Albert won her fourth adult singles title of the season in the women's event, defeating Jodi Dye. Eric and Dakota are pictured.
Men's doubles champs are Karsten Larsen (Saskatoon) and Ashtin Bear (Prince Albert). Over in the women's it was Jodi Dye and Bev Roth of Saskatoon.
Sponsored by the Splish Splash Auto and Pet Wash to the tune of $1,000, the tournament's payout was a nice bonus for all the winners. Thanks to N.B. darts club for another great event!
Youth Team '16 announced
The 2016 Youth Provincials were held in Moose Jaw February 27-28 and the winners are:
Joshua Grenier Senior Boys champ. Lyneta Grenier Senior Girls champ, Clover Arndt 2nd place.
Rianna December Junior Girls champ, Shaukeena McKay 2nd place. Saul Arndt Junior Boys champ, Jaymes Swenson 2nd place, David Pelly 3rd place.
The team for NDFC Youth Nationals will include the winners and seconds listed above. David Pelly will be senior boys' second. Nationals take place in Richmond B.C. in May.
Team Saskatchewan for Youth Nationals 2016: L-R Saul Arndt, Jaymes Swenson, David Pelly, Josh Grenier,
Eleven young players from across Saskatchewan travelled to provincials this year. Participants came from Prince Albert, Nipawin, Hudson Bay, Saskatoon and Regina. Here's another picture with all the players who took part - no names, you know who you are!
SDA Youth Director Shawn Solomon had help making the event a success. Shout-outs go to Shauna Grassing, Dave Propp, Pat Copeman, Carol Shepherd, Rod Swenson, Trish Gray, Brad December, Judy and Ken Cleaveley, Becky and Dan Arndt, Curt and Jesee Gamble, among others.
Ashtin doubles at Pines
Ashtin Bear of Prince Albert takes the 2016 Nipawin Pines Open title, defeating Perry Burton of Flin Flon in the final February 20. On Sunday, Ashtin teamed up with Karsten Larsen of Saskatoon to win men's doubles. Ashtin is shown on the left.
The women's singles champ is Laurie Unger of Nipawin, who defeated Jodi Dye of Saskatoon in the final. That's Laurie to the right.
Women's doubles winners are Randi and Roberta who beat Rita and Rianna.
You can see full results from Nipawin.
Dale passed away on January 22, 2016 at the age of 68 years after a courageous battle with cancer.
Dale was a true sportsman, a quiet competitor and a good friend to all dart players. He will be truly missed by our club. We will remember him for his sportsmanship, his generosity and his quiet demeanour. He never failed to offer encouragement to our youth players, new players and female competitors.
Dale was the type of person who was genuinely happy when his opponent threw a good game and openly celebrated with the victor.
Dale participated in SDA events as well as Legion Darts. He won many
provincial titles in the Legion events, in both the open and closed
events. He travelled to PEI in 2007 for the Dominion Championships as
part of the four-man team. The following years he chose to play in the
open side as the Dominion championship was
in May and he was concerned to be away from his farm in the spring.
- Shauna Grassing, Nipawin Darts Club
- Shauna Grassing, Nipawin Darts Club
The Blizzard was held in Regina January 23. Men's singles winner is Jason Skinner, who beat Eric Matheson in the final. Men's doubles went to John Brann and Jesee Gamble.
Women's champ is Aspen Hall, taking the singles event and the doubles with her partner Judy Cleaveley. You can see full results from Regina here.
New faces at Youth Classic
Young players from Hudson Bay, Nipawin, Regina and Saskatoon played in the Youth Classic tournament in Regina January 16, reports the SDA's new Youth Director Shawn Solomon, who was running his first tourney as YD.
The players got warmed up with some doubles, with most of the adults joining in, says Shawn. Then they got into the singles play in the afternoon.
Senior girls: 1st Lyneta Grenier; 2nd Savanah Solomon. Senior boys: 1st Josh Grenier. Junior girls: 1st Rianna December; 2nd Shaukeena McKay. Junior boys: 1st Saul Arndt; 2nd David Pelly; 3rd Dillon Dumont.
The participants are pictured with SDA President Pat Copeman and Shawn. No names needed - you know who you are! Great to see some new names on the list. Let's wish them all the best for Youth Provincials February 27-28.
Eric, Cathy repeat at Heminger
Eric Matheson of Saskatoon became the first man to successfully defend the Al Heminger Memorial Trophy January 9, while Cathy Kerrigan, also from Saskatoon, repeated her win from last year in the women's event. They're pictured left.
Women's doubles champs are Sharon Acker and Jess Lobb of North Battleford; that's them on the right. It's Jess's first win at an SDA event!
Men's doubles went to Jason Skinner of North Battleford and his partner Danny Mckenzie of Stanley Mission, looking happy about it below left.
Sportsmanship awards at this tournament are voted on by players. This year the awards go to Hunch Gray and Trish Gray, pictured below right. Congratulations to all the winners!
SDA Vice-president Wayne Hudson presented Ashtin Bear of Prince Albert with a cheque for $154 for winning the SDA men's 170 out pot. Ashtin had made the maximum finish at the Hudson Bay shoot in November.
Organizers Elaine Walker and Laurie Kitzul of SUDO thanked the volunteers and all the players for attending the ever-popular tournament. You can see full results here.
Toy Shoot 25 a success
The 25th Annual Charity Toy Shoot was held in Saskatoon on December 5, reports Laurie Kitzul:
"This is a mixed-doubles (one man and one woman) steel-tip dart tournament where the entry fee is toys. For 25 years, dart players have been supporting this great event that I’ve had the privilege to organize. This year we had 24 teams (48 players), and lots of non-players who brought toys as well. We did draws for various items and raised $250.00 which was donated to the Salvation Army’s Secret Santa along with all those toys.
"We ran a food drive for the Saskatoon Food Bank , collecting food donations from players and spectators. This was our fourth year incorporating the food drive and it’s here to stay!
"First place went to Cathy Kerrigan and Alex Parnitsky, who took out Eva Schellenberg and Eric Matheson in the final. Thank you to all the participants, all our sponsors who donated gifts and prizes and the volunteers who made all of this possible. " – Laurie Kitzul
Ashtin takes first of season; Dakota's run continues
Hudson Bay's North East Classic tournament was held November 21-22. Here's local organizer and SDA secretary Judy Cleaveley with a report:
"This year was a totally huge success. Ashtin Bear had reason to smile as he not only took the men’s singles event, he also shot a perfect 170 out, winning himself the SDA 170 out pot as well as the Hudson Bay 170 Out pot worth $800. All in all a very good weekend for Mr. Bear.
"Ken Cleaveley presented Ashtin with a cheque for $800 on behalf of the Hudson Bay Club. Ashtin is shown at the board with the darts still in place from his 170 out.
"Blind draw winners are James Walter and Eric
Matheson; Men’s Doubles winners are Eric Matheson and Jason Skinner;
Ladies’ Singles winner is Dakota Roberts; Mixed Triples winners are
Myles Charles, Lowine Binkley & Danny McKenzie. " - Judy
" - Judy Cleaveley
Thanks Judy.That's Dakota Roberts's third ladies' singles win of the season, and she still doesn't make the ranking list because she isn't an adult! Fellow Prince Albert star and 2014 NDFC youth champion Ashtin Bear remains at the top of the men's rankings with his win, tied on points with Eric Matheson of Saskatoon. You can see full results from Hudson Bay here.
Football pool payout $3,850
SDA President Pat Copeman has reported $3,850 in prizes paid out in the 2015 SDA Riders football pool. Thanks to everyone who entered! You can see a list of prizewinners here.
Champ on form at Battleford
Provincial men's champion Danny Mckenzie of Stanley Mission showed why he's our top player yet again at the Oktobershoot in North Battleford November 7. Danny won men's singles with a victory over first-time finalist Steve Kristjansson of Saskatoon.
Fellow Stanley Mission star Georgina Ratt came out on top in women's singles, beating Lori Mackay of Lloydminster in the final.
Georgina and Danny are pictured right.
Three of the best
Earlier in the day a triples event was played. The top team was Dakota Roberts, Eric Matheson and Harold King.
That's the trio with brio on the left. See the full results here.
Fun in Rosetown
With a report from the Fall Fun Shoot in Rosetown, held on October 24, here's Trish Gray:
"Well our Fall Fun Shoot was another successful one. "
- Trish Gray
" - Trish Gray
Bonnie three-peats at Open
Bonnie Lapierre of Regina won the Sask Open for the third time in a row October 17, defeating Tracy Keel, also from Regina, in the final. Bonnie went on to win doubles with her partner Joan Hodgen of Midale, which is a repeat of last year's result. Bonnie and Joan are shown left in 2014.
In the men's event it was Shawn Burt of Alberta who won singles, having teamed up with Adrienne Veters to win mixed doubles the previous evening.
Men's doubles went to Ron Looker and Scott Sansom, who beat the Moose Jaw team of Curt Gamble and Jesee Gamble.
You can see full results from Regina here.
Karsten, Judy make a run at the Border
Karsten Larsen of Saskatoon took first place at the Darts On The Border tournament in Lloydminster October 3. He defeated Eric Matheson of Saskatoon in the final. They're pictured left.
Women's champ is Judy Cleaveley of Hudson Bay, who cements her position on top of the women's rankings. She defeated Rita Larsen of Saskatoon in the final.
The finalists then joined forces to win the women's doubles. That's Rita and Judy to the right.
Men's doubles winners are Matheson and his partner Harold King of Saskatoon.
You can see full results from Lloydminster here.
Eric, Dakota make a ruling at the AGM
The Saskatchewan Darts Association's 2015 Annual General Meeting and darts tournament took place at Davidson Saturday September 12.
Eric Matheson of Saskatoon repeated his 2014 win in men's singles, defeating Perry Burton of Flin Flon in the final.
Prince Albert-based youth star Dakota Roberts, pictured left, took the win in the women's singles over Aspen Hall of Mortlach.
Men's doubles winners are Ashtin Bear of Prince Albert and Steve Kristjansson of Saskatoon, pictured right, who beat Regina pair Shawn Solomon and Klyne Obey in the final.
Women's doubles champs are Shauna Grassing of Nipawin and Lori Mackay of Lloydminster, pictured right.
AGM passes smoothly
SDA President Pat Copeman chaired the 2015 AGM, where executives presented their reports to the 34 assembled members. The Association is financially sound; no issue of any major concern was brought up. Most pressing is the need to increase our membership numbers and get more players to come out to tournaments.
Two new executive members sat on the board: 2nd-vice-president Brian Humphreys (Flin Flon) and secretary Judy Cleaveley (Hudson Bay). Pat Copeman announced that Shawn Solomon has been named as interim youth director, taking over the position vacated by Trish Gray, who has stepped down for personal reasons.
Pat thanked all the volunteers for helping to set up the boards on Friday evening. We thank you, Pat, for providing the lunch and taking care of the bar.
Larsen hosts fun darts
In between events, Team Sask player Karsten Larsen introduced a fun-darts game, "The Weakest Link". It was an enjoyable interlude and it turns out that Ashtin Bear is the strongest link.
Did you know? The 2016 NDFC Nationals will be held in Richmond, B.C.
In 2017, they move to Saint John, New Brunswick.
Stay tuned for up-to-the-minute news of any announcements or changes to tourney dates.
This is a record of all maximum 180s and 171s recorded by SDA players at tournaments this season.
Well done to everyone who hit a 180 for the first time in competition - the first of many!
Records on this site date back to the 2000-1 season. If you have earlier records and archives in your possession, please contact the SDA
© 2016 Saskatchewan Darts Association
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