Burnaby Premier Men Win at Wallace: Firsts Suffer First Loss
posted April 11 2017 from Mike Devlin
BLRC 3rd Div Men 14 – Ridge Meadows Bruins 19
The 3rds travelled East to take on the Bruins in Maple Ridge. The 2 clubs share an extremely friendly history with many players having donned both jerseys over the years. There is also a unique set of jerseys with both club crests on it that was worn by the Bruins for a season during the clubs infancy. I know the whereabouts of one of them, the rest of the set may be lost to history.
The BLRC got on the board first and held the lead for much of the game through converted try’s from Kyle Geach and Tom Menzies but Bruins flanker Dustin Fletcher answered with 2 try’s of his own. Late in the game the Burnaby 3rds were clinging to a 14-12 lead when the Bruins Julian Benvenuti crossed the try line and converted his own to give Ridge-Meadows their first lead of the game as time ran out! Congrats to the Bruins on the win and thanks for being great hosts. For the 3rds it’s their first loss of the season, so hopefully then can rebound this weekend at home vs the Rowing Club.
BLRC Premier Reserve 19 – UVIC Norsemen 23
The BLRC firsts also suffered their first loss of the season on Saturday. A weird start to the day which saw 3 players no show at the ferry terminal left them short on spares continued into the afternoon where the squad had an uncharacteristically high number of knock ons. (approx. 25 of them) that prevented them from putting points on the board at their normal pace. In spite of some slippery fingers the Firsts did jump out to a 7-3 halftime lead through a Brad McHugh try and Gareth Marsden convert and eventually went up 19-6 after try’s from Ed Swire and Marsden plus a Nolan Shelley conversion. But UVIC kept coming and eventually, with about 10 minutes left in the game, chipped away at the BLRC lead with their #15 splitting the defence and scoring. A minute later, the UVIC winger anticipated a pass in the BLRC backfield and grabbed it easily, taking it all the way to the BLRC goal before being held up. UVIC got quick ball out of the scrum and sent it wide where #20 dove over the try line. Both try’s were converted and the Norsemen now led by 1. Just before the whistle, the students were given a chance to add 3 points and they were successful. Game over, final score 23-19. Post game Coach Murph used the loss as a reminder that the Reserves weren’t going to just roll through everyone this year and that the BLRC players would need to dig deep if they were going to finish the season strong.
Andrew Porter breaks a tackle vs UVIC. photo credit: Pj Carr images
The full game can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTsZiaB4CQ0
BLRC Premier Men 41 – UVIC Vikes 26
There may have been an air of overconfidence running throughout the Burnaby Lake Men’s program this week (there certainly was in the Premier Reserve match!). With their final 2 games being played against the 8th + 9th ranked teams there may have been some who figured they’d show up + get a sweat on before heading back to the ferry with 5 points in their pocket, but the Burnaby Lake Premier Men found out early that UVIC wasn’t ready to call it a season just yet. Liam Chisolm and the young buck UVIC forwards came out slinging the ball around like backs and had the early momentum in their favour. The BLRC, however took an early lead on their first foray into enemy territory. A UVIC penalty allowed Cole McQueen to clear the ball almost to the students 22m. The lineout was won by McLaughlin and the ball sent wide to Kimi Vunituraga who took on 2 defenders before offloading the ball to McQueen who beat 1 tackler to score and put the BLRC up 5-0.
Mike Goodall mugging for the camera just before passing. photo credit: Pj Carr images
The next 2 scoring opportunities came back to back for UVIC and put a scare into the BLRC supporters who had made the trek to Wallace Field to cheer on their club! UVIC was running and gunning after a set at the half way point and an overlap was created that let Fergus Hall make some big yards before passing it out to winger Jonathan Lorimer who scored beneath the posts! Minutes later Carson O’Sulivan broke the Burnaby defensive line and then fended off 4 tacklers on his way in under the posts. Hall converted both and put UVIC ahead 14-5. That bit of shoddy tackling seemed to clear the Burnaby Lake heads a bit as they emerged from beneath the goal posts and thoroughly controlled the next 60 minutes of play.
Cole McQueen finds a gap in the Vikes defence. Photo credit: Pj Carr images
At the 25 minute mark the BLRC had a lineout at the UVIC 5m and captain Anthony “Camo Crocs” Luca was at the back of a maul as it went over for a try! 5 minutes later another 5m lineout was stopped by the Vikes defence but a series of pick and goes brought the BLRC close to the paint. BLRC junior and UBC alumni Mike O’Toole grabbed the ball and dove over the line for a try. James Reekie hit his 1st conversion of the day and the BLRC had a 17-14 lead. Just before the half, the Blue & White would cross again to secure their much needed bonus point. The Burnaby Lake attack was stalling at the UVIC 10m and it seemed that the first 40 might end with the close score line but subsequent runs from Ben Rowley, Lucas Albornoz and Cole Mosychuk got the attack steamrolling before James Reekie tied up the UVIC centres and popped the ball to Kimi Vunituraga who stepped inside the last defender to score his first of two try’s in the game. Reekie’s convert ended the half with the score 24-14 in the BLRC’s favour.
Craig McLaughlin brings the ball down in a lineout/. Photo credit: Pj Carr images
The 2nd half began with a try from UVIC stalwart Kapi Vaitaki. UVIC were aggressive off the kickoff and pushed the BLRC back into their own end with Chisolm the main catalyst. The ball eventually left the forwards and went wide to a streaking Vaitaki who dove over into the corner for a nice try! The score sat at 24-19 for 10 minutes before Vunituraga’s 2nd try got the scoreboard moving again. After a BLRC scrum at their own 22m scrumhalf Mark Higgins sent the ball to James Reekie who passed it to Mike Goodall. Goodall found a huge gap and made it to the UVIC 10m before finding contact. Goodall found Vunitraga with a flat pass and Kimi out-legged the UVC defence to put the BLRC ahead 29-19. Ten minutes passed with each team testing the opposition before the BLRC worked themselves back into scoring position. After the big boys crashed it up and bottled the UVIC defence the ball was dished wide to the speedy Dan Josok who collided with his opposite at the try line, kept his feet and touched down for 5 more points.
As he has so often done against the BLRC over the years, Vaitaki answered the bell for the VIkes yet again. UVIC executed a quick play from the back of a scrum and the ball went from 8 to 9 to 15 in the blink of an eye. Vaitaki got the ball with a full head of steam, fending off one BLRC tackler at the 22m on his way in for his 2nd try! Giuseppe Du Toit made the convert from the sideline to draw a little closer, 34-26. UVIC kept pushing and with only a few minutes left were threatening but an off kilter pass was bouncing when BLRC winger Shane Dagg scooped it up at the BLRC 10m line and took off, putting some space between himself and the nearest Vike before coasting in for a try in the corner. James Reekie made the difficult conversion and that was all she wrote. Final score: 41 – 26
A higher scoring game than I had expected, but looking back, most games between the teams tend to be high scoring affairs. For the Vikes I thought Kapi Vaitaki was their standout player, scoring 2 try’s and making some timely tackles that no doubt saved some points. In the forwards, former Kelowna Crow Liam Chisolm would get the nod. He was a physical presence on the field and money in the lineouts. For the visitors, the BLRC’s own Starsky & Hutch Hooker duo of Lackner and Govorchin would share my M.O.M. vote. Both players ran the ball well and played great defence. The BLRC lineout was also the starting point for quite a bit of the BLRC attack. In the backs, Outside Centre Kimi Vunituraga led the team with 2 try’s and was always a factor when he got the ball!
The full game can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVEbW3DGbZc
Next weekend sees the Men’s program back at Burnaby Lake for only the 2nd time this year when they host the Rowing Club in a full day of club on club rugby! Any & all rugby fans are invited down to Burnaby Lake to take in 3 exciting matches!
www.burnabylakerugby.com Many Teams~One Club
Burnaby Men Win Three Matches vs Ravens & Abby; Women Lose Close One to Westshore
by Mike Devlin posted April 3 2017
BLRC Premier Women 12 – Westshore RFC 19 (by guest scribe, Deb Capps)
The BLRC premier women put forth a huge team effort against Westshore Saturday, but came up short despite a hard push in the last 10 minutes. BLRC saw an early lead with a team effort try touched down by Iona Schamberger and a successful convert by Gen Gratton. Westshore responded with a try/convert combo of their own. Gratton then ran in another try but fell short on the convert. Westshore answered with a try to tie up the game going into the break.
The second half saw huge defensive team efforts, with special mention to Carly Walker, Katie Grudzinski & Angel Santos. Westshore capitalized on a one-player overlap through a BLRC yellow card early in the second half and touched down the final try/convert combo of the game. Despite huge runs by Tiana Coutts and the last 10 minutes being played within Westshore’s 22, BLRC wasn’t successful. Final score Westshore 19, BLRC 12.
BLRC 3rd Div Men 34 – Abbotsford RFC 17
Another spirited effort from the BLRC 3rd Div Army that produces another bonus point victory. The 6 BLRC try’s were spread out amongst 6 BLRC players with Tom Menzies converting on 2 of them. Jarett Richardson made his return to the starting XV after a brief vacay and some time with the Premier Reserves and his impact was felt with 4 of the BLRC’s try’s coming through the backline. The pack was bolstered by the return of Cam Young, a stalwart of the 3rds, whose availability “issues” are really the only thing are keeping him out of higher level rugby. He doesn’t look like a prop, but he’ a tough customer in the front row. BLRC try’s were scored by Solis, Flello, Irwin, Bonell, McLeod-Genest and McKeown.
The win keeps the BLRC atop the Mainland 3A standings with a tough match vs the Ridge Meadows Bruins awaiting them in Maple Ridge this weekend.
BLRC Premier Reserve Men 53 – UBCOB Ravens 20
The Premier Reserve match opened with Cian Keegan and the Ravens #14 exchanging 3 pointers before Keegan got the first try of the game to put the BLRC ahead 8-3. The Ravens responded though with their #14 doing the heavy lifting. The winger hit a penalty, scored a try and converted it to put the Ravens up 13-8 at the half. The BLRC had the slope in their favour for the 2nd half and this opened the game up substantially. The BLRC pack pushed the overmatched Ravens back over the try line where Ed Swire touched the ball down to tie it up. Swire followed that up with a 2nd try a few minutes later after long runs from Nisbett and Marsden brought the BLRC in close. Captain Adrian Longbone was next on the scoreboard, getting a crash ball and diving over for the try. A few converts from Marsden made the score 27-13 for Burnaby Lake. Centre Angus fisher was moved to scrum half for the remainder of the game, and called his own number often, scoring consecutive tries on pick and goes close to the Ravens try line. The Ravens hadn’t given up though. Winger Kalepi Gucake had a nice 10m run for his side to cap their scoring at 20. The BLRC had 2 more tries left in them though. Prop Juan Videla and local hero Kyle Geach each scored late to bring the final score to 53-20.
I think the Ravens did a great job early, putting the BLRC on the back foot for the first time this season. This may have been the first time that the BLRC trailed in a game since October’s Seattle trip. At halftime, cooler heads prevailed in the BLRC huddle and they were able to right the ship, scoring 45 second half points.
Andy Drummond with the back door pass to Marsden – photo credit, Pj Carr
The full game can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2yxAJqC3wk
BLRC Premier Men 29 – UBCOB Ravens 10
A hard hitting performance for the enjoyment of the fans in attendance. A general air of dislike between the 2 sides made for a thoroughly chippy and exciting game. The BLRC struck first at the 20 minute mark through their pack. A series of scrums and penalties had the BLRC set up at the Ravens 5m and the Burnaby Lake forwards used the 8 man shove to push their counterparts back over the line. 8-man Taitusi Vikilani dropped on the ball to put the BLRC ahead 5-0. The Ravens responded quickly after the BLRC overthrew their own lineout. UBCOB veteran Nick Waggot came away with the ball and sent it to the backs where scrumhalf AJ King brought it into the BLRC 22m. The ball was sent wide to Aaron McLelland on the wing who beat the last scrambling defender to score. King made quick work of the convert and the Ravens were ahead 7-5. At the half hour mark Mike O’Toole would put Burnaby Lake back in the lead. The BLRC had a lineout in the UBCOB end and turned it into a strong maul with winger Shane Dagg joining in to keep things moving along. O’Toole had ball in hand at the back of the train when it crossed over the paint. 10-7 for the Blue & White. Just before the half, Taitusi went on a big run that took the BLRC from mid field all the way to the Ravens 5m line. Vikilani popped to O’Toole who was taken down just inside the 5m. A few pick and goes by the BLRC forwards put the ball into the hands of Lucas Albornoz who drove his shoulder into the opposition and spun as he dove forward, touching the ball down for another 5 points. Mark Higgins split the uprights and the half ended 17-7 for Burnaby Lake.
Taitusi Vikilani breaking tackles in the first half – photo credit, Pj Carr
Burnaby Lake was the first to get the scoreboard moving in the 2nd half. The BLRC had camped out in the Ravens territory when Cole Mosychuk tore off the back of a maul and made it close to the Ravens 5m line before being tackled. Lucas Albornoz was the first man on the scene quickly picking the ball up and diving over the line for another 5 points. Mark Higgins conversion was good and the BLRC were ahead 24-7. AJ King would draw the Ravens a little closer, turning a BLRC penalty into 3 points but 24-10 would be as close as it got. A few minutes later the BLRC were back on attack and were rewarded with a scrum at the UBCOB 5m. The pack pushed it over and Vikilani would be awarded his 2nd try of the game! 29-10 was the final score.
Cole Mosychuk tries to escape the clutches of Charlie Thorpe – photo credit, Pj Carr
The full game can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mI3A8TwYhnw
Next weekend sees the Premier and Premier Reserve teams cross the Strait to take on UVIC, the 3rd Div Men head across the Pitt River Bridge to take on the Ridge Meadows Bruins and the Premier Women host Cowichan.
Lucas Albornoz stretches out for a try – photo credit, Pj Carr