Match Report from SMUS v Oak Bay Howard Russell Cup and Inaugural Don Burgess Memorial Trophy Presentation to Nick Carson
A full day of high school rugby May 17 at SMUS ended in dramatic fashion, as Oak Bay's Connor Hills scored in the left corner in the final seconds of the game to deny the hosts a spectacular upset victory.
After an early Nick Carson try, converted by Jack Carson, staked the Barbarians to a 7-0 lead, the game moved back and forth, with both sides missing chances.
Eventually, a 43rd minute penalty goal by the Blue Jags' Luke Rainier-Pope reduced the margin to 7-3. Then, five minutes from full time, scrum half Ephraim Hsu sent the home supporters into a frenzy with a dazzling solo score in the corner. With Rainier-Pope adding the extras with a superb, wide angled kick, SMUS led 10-7.
However, a fairy tale finish was not to be. Oak Bay capitalized on a Blue Jags error deep in the 22, and worked the ball from this possession through the phases to record the winning points.
In earlier games, Claremont defeated Belmont 44-7 to secure the Lower Island AAA top seed for the May 23 Island finals.
Also, in an Island Junior Boys semi-final, SMUS jumped out to a 31-0 halftime lead en route to beating Brentwood 45-12.
The day overall had even more significance, as the Don Burgess Memorial trophy was presented for the first time. Burgess, who passed away three months ago at the age of 85, was a local and Canadian playing, coaching and teaching legend, and the founder of the kicking tee which has been used world wide for decades. The trophy, to recognize the Most Outstanding Player in the 2018 Lower Island Senior Boys competition, was awarded to Nick Carson, the talented #8 forward for Oak Bay.
Island High School Playoff Matches May 17th and May 23rd
May 16 2018
With the conclusion of league play, Junior Boys and Senior Boys Rugby now moves to the playoff stages, with important matches scheduled for both Thursday, May 17 and Wednesday, May 23.
On Thursday, May 17 four games will be played. These include two Junior Boys Island semifinals, as well as both the Colonel Hodgkins Cup and Howard Russell Cup at Senior level.
The schedule is as below.
Belmont (South #2) vs Shawnigan (North #1) - 11.30am KO (at Shawnigan)
Brentwood (North #2) vs SMUS (South #1) - 2.00pm KO (at SMUS)
Colonel Hodgkins Cup - Belmont vs Claremont - 3.30pm KO (at SMUS)
Howard Russell Cup - Oak Bay vs SMUS - 5.00pm KO (at SMUS)
Also, following presentation of the Howard Russell Cup final, the inaugural winner of the Don Burgess Memorial Trophy, for the most outstanding local player at Senior Boys level this season, will be awarded. The six finalists are
Nick Carson (Oak Bay)
Luke Rainier-Pope (SMUS)
Gavin Kilpatrick (Belmont)
Chris Graham (GNS)
Gareth Sander (Claremont)
Lachlan Kratz (Oak Bay)
Wednesday, May 23 will see various Island finals take place. At Senior AAAA level, Oak Bay meets Shawnigan while SMUS takes on Brentwood in the AA showcase.
The two Junior semifinal winners from May 17 will also meet to decide an Island champion, while other, still to be confirmed Senior matchups between South Island and North Island opponents will be contested.
All these games will take place at either UVIC's Wallace Field or SMUS.
For further information, please contact LVISSAA Rugby commissioner Ian Hyde-Lay at 250-818-1778.