Westshore Place Two Teams in Finals: Premier Women and Div 3 Men - Match Reports by Clancy McDonnell
Premier Women: WRFC 50 – OBCW 0
Westshore’s Velox Valkyries hosted CW in a semi-final on Saturday, and after some weeks of kicking themselves for ordinary play they produced a satisfying game that left spectators in no doubt about their form. Shortly after the kick-off they marched up field and then leaned into the opposition for a couple of minutes until they broke the defensive line, with Chelsey Minter crashing over for the first try.
The rest of the game followed on from this assertive start. CW boasted some capable players, but couldn’t put enough phases together to maintain pressure when they got within shooting distance. This was due in large part to the emphatic defensive effort from the Valkyries, with prop Randi Hunter among those to make thumping tackles, while the centres McKenzie Pusch and Paige Farries worked well together.
On attack it was again an all court game. The scrum dominated. # 8 Zoe Goodwin-Sutton scored a couple of tries. Fullback Elissa Alarie crashed over in the corner, and winger Madison Aberg bagged one as well. Sarah Levson played a full game in the outfit, save for a ten minute breather after a cruel attacker ducked into a tackle. Haley Hall added some popular experience towards the end, while Rosie Lang’s handling and direct running made serious inroads late in the game.
As the game wore on the Valkyries maintained shape and effectiveness. They pressed right to the end, holding CW down in their own quarter for much of the last 20 minutes. Director of Women’s Rugby Marlene Donaldson was typically
succinct in her assessment, calling it “textbook rugby”.
Men’s 3rd Division: WRFC 19 – Squamish 12
Westshore’s Mighty Velox 3rd XV Vampires hosted the Squamish Axemen for perhaps the first time ever. Although the home side led from the front, it was an exciting competitive game. The home side took first points through Cory Walker, with Conrad Newell booting the conversion through the sticks. Both teams made good ground with ball in hand, but that’s not to say there were easy pathways to the line. #8 Ryan Waldriff, in a typically robust display, would eventually plough through for a couple of tries, but the visiting Axemen were always within sniffing distance, causing game-day manager Cam Neish to lose a bit more of his hair. But the good guys got up in the end, and joined their sister team in booking a spot in the finals at Abbotsford next weekend.
It was the last home game for the season, and a fine occasion despite some rain. Moment of the day was the long tunnel for the Valkyries, while club stalwart Dave Millard sharing half his 50/50 winnings with the players probably deserves mention. Both the Valkyries and the 3rd XV head off to Abbotsford, with great plans afoot for the Westshore Bus to convey supporters.