Westshore Men Lose Two to Seattle in Premier & Reserve; Premier Women Claim Win Versus Seattle
by Clancy McDonnell
Men’s Premier: WRFC 31 – Seattle 53
Westshore’s Velox Valhallians hosted Seattle on Saturday in the culmination of a triple header and were comprehensively outplayed by the visitors. The VVs started slowly, while Seattle were ready to go, and the 21-0 deficit after 15 or 20 minutes reflected that.
Seattle made ground through a mixture of power play and continuity. They ran hard, kept their feet, pumped their legs through contact, and repeatedly beat the first tackle. Support players were in the right spots, and the ball carriers effected a number of good offloads. The other side of that coin is that the VV defence has had better days. They were often too high in contact, and when offloads went to hand the home side wasn’t ready to shut it down quickly enough.
Anyway, the first half was one sided, but in the second half the VVs scored some decent points, although they couldn’t stem the Seattle tide. Twice the Westshore team scored and within five minutes were back under their own sticks.
It wasn’t all doom and gloom – Ben Brill continues to impress from #8, with a knack for keeping his feet and swerving his way into gaps, while Jason Gagnier was his standard, industrious self. In the backs, Kevin Vertkas is honing his craft in the centres, and Conrad Newell ran off his wing well.
Having slept on it Coach Aaron Frisby looked to one of the all time great intellects of sport to help explain his thoughts: “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth”, he said. “I have to do a better job preparing these guys under game-like pressure to be able to play the kind of footy we want to, and then get the better results we want.”
Men’s Premier Reserve: WRFC 19 – Seattle 29
The VVs 2nd XV played excellent rugby to begin, playing a good territory game and then executing sharply to get a couple of tries up. The Seattle team also knew how to score tries, and the game was tied at 19 apiece in the second half. Two tries in the last ten minutes gave Seattle the win.
Women’s Premier: WRFC 38 – Seattle 21
This was a competitive game – probably the most challenging for the Valkyries this season. Even so, they notched a number of tries. The opening one was a beut, with centre Amanda Thornborough running a straight line, beating a number of defenders, and then just before being tackled with the try-line in close sight she managed to pop a somewhat speculative offload that hung in the air for speedy fly-half Elissa Alarie to run on to. The Valkyries share top spot on the standings with Capilano, whom they’re scheduled to play this weekend.
Jordy Mäkelä, the young hooker making good strides in the Premier Reserve team, won the meat raffle (surely the biggest the club’s seen – half a cow). The combined Westshore/Cowichan Women’s 1st Div team won their game against Bayside (29-25). Probably the best flow seen on Saturday belonged to the referee for the women’s match. We’ve got matches scheduled against Capilano over there on Saturday, but it looks like frozen ground will intervene.