The Worst Great Shot Ever
Since our visit to The Crush at the beginning of the month, we've finished our summer league (in the middle of the pack, but it's okay), and gone into the usual cycle of Learn-to-Curl events and teaching, with the Fall League just two weeks away.
I've also been re-living the trip to Vacaville, going with my team, hanging with three of the best people on the planet -- and playing on Sunday.
Our first game was an education. We "played" a much better team, and we accomplished our first goal: get out of the "A" bracket.
Our second game was better, but with a more experienced team out of San Francisco. Still to plan.
We had to beat friends to stay in and play on Sunday.
... and a team of mostly-OCC members on Sunday for our final game.
The one shot of mine that I really remember from The Crush was in that game. It's a shot I remember watching first time Learn-to-Curl students first delivery.
These past two weeks, none of my students looked as bad as I did during that one shot.
I get in the hack, and everything seems fine. Misha is calling for a double-takeout, and I'm pretty confident with my takeouts. As a team we struggled reading the ice, but that's past and this is going to be a nice shot. Probably not good enough to get us back into the match, but something notable anyway.
Slide forward a little, draw back and lean into the delivery.
Everything was wrong. Everything. Out of alignment, off-broom, way off balance. If I release the stone straight, it's going to mess with the game on the next sheet.
Brenna and Brian are right there, on either side, ready to sweep this horrible characture of a delivery. From the hack to the near hog line, quite possibly the worst delivery ever.
I knew it was bad before I was out of the hack. My teammates can see it, and I know what they were thinking ("this is going to suck."). I had a second or two to think about how horrible it was, and time to realize that I really could not make the shot any worse -- and tried to fix it.
I released the stone, and from the release all the way to the house at the other end, it was a thing of beauty. Misha, who was focused on the stone as it came down the sheet saw nothing but a beautiful double-take-out with just the right turn, and just the right amount of "authority" to remove two of their rocks from the house.
Sometimes, the Curling Gods smile.