Buzzing on Yahoo Sports

Eh Game

Scotties Tournament of Hearts: Nearly losing her foot doesn’t stop Newfoundland skip from playing at Scotties

Newfoundland & Labrador Skip Stacie Devereaux calls a shot against British Columbia during the thirteenth draw …

It's been a tough week for Stacie Devereaux. Her team from Newfoundland & Labrador has struggled to a 1-8 record at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Kingston, but things could have been much worse for the 26-year-old skip.

Devereaux is a Border Services Officer. In September she was inspecting a fishing boat. As she was stepping off the vessel a wave resulted in Devereaux's right foot being crushed between the boat and the dock.

The accident left Devereaux with a broken heal and nearly cost her the foot. Her coach Craig Withycombe remembers being shocked the first time he saw Devereaux's injured foot.

"It was size of a football," he said. "According to the doctor she was lucky she never lost her foot. If it wasn't for the boots she had on there would have been a lot more damage.

"I didn't think she would be back this year for sure."

The next several weeks were difficult for Devereaux. She had to concentrate on healing while clinging to the hopes she'd be back on ice in time to qualify for her second Scotties.

"I sat down for about six weeks with my foot propped up," said Devereaux, a former Canadian junior champion. "I'm not a person that sits very well.

"It was a really tough fall for us as a team and for me personally."

In December Devereaux clandestinely began throwing a few rocks.

"We were sneaking in once and a while when we knew nobody was around because we weren't sure how it was going to go, whether the swelling was going to come back," said Withycombe.

Devereaux spent time just working on her slide. She then threw limited rocks.

"I really worked hard to get back," Devereaux said.

She recovered in time for her rink to win the Newfoundland & Labrador title, defeating Heather Strong, a 10-time contender at the Scotties, in two out of three games.

Devereaux has suffered some tough losses this week but refuses to blame her foot, which swells during each game.

"She downplays it to me," said Withycombe. "She doesn't like to tell me what's going on.

"She's competitor. She is going to be here regardless."

Part of Devereaux's job as a Border Services Guard is to inspect arriving boats and airplanes for inadmissible persons and prohibited items like drugs and weapons.

There is a risk factor, which adds to the excitement of the job.

"It's not quite the same as being a police officer," Devereaux said.

"There are aspects of the job that are scary and the unknown is scary. Every day is different."

Devereaux can draw a parallel drawn between curling and her job.

"I don't really know what I'm going to get into when I walk into work every day," she said. "You never know what is coming off an airplane or a ship.

"It's sort of like every curling situation is a little bit different. In curling, you get rocks that pick. It's definitely similar."

Yahoo! Sports Authors