Capilano Win Two on the Road at Nanaimo Hornets
by John Langley
A trip to Nanaimo and to visit their historic Clubhouse is always a great way to spend a Saturday. This is an easy commute for the North Shore side and we are always greeted and well hosted by old friends! The results haven’t always been in the Caps favour as Nanaimo always plays to win, but today we came away with two much needed wins. Nanaimo has been hit with a rash of injuries and that always adversely affects the reserve team.
The Premier Reserve Game was won by Capilano 82-0:
Caps lost a close one to CW last week and were out to prove that they could “ right the ship” There were so many outstanding runs but the team was led by Jordan Orr with 3 tries. Kes Kasha, the silver Fox, also with a hat trick, James Ritzma with two, and Giles Klaver with two including a penalty try. Lucas “Fish” McLennan notched one and set up others, he also contributed with his busy left boot and added 4 conversions. He felt that he should be credited for the automatic points on the penalty try. We might have to check with the rules committee on that one! Number 10 Carter Wanless had an excellent game and scored the first try. Mahyer Hosseini a converted football player, ran well all game, and asked me to mention that. A near by Cap supporter said, “buying him a beer helps". Graeme Buckler was welcomed back after a head laceration a few games ago, and he ran well also. Thanks to Craig Rice a Capilano veteran prop who now lives in Comox for making a 20 minute appearance, to rest up a prop to reserve in the Premier game. Great club spirit Craig, always great to see you! Giles Klaver wore the yellow convict shirt as Caps Man of the Match. Jordan Orr and Ryan Scott were rewarded for their efforts with some reserve time in the Premier game. What is becoming obvious is that Capilano have some necessary competition for positions on the Premier side. Congratulations to the players, coaches and trainers for their hard work. Thanks to the referee who had a good game also.
The Premier Match: Caps won 41-24:
Caps had much to prove in this one. The games against Nanaimo, on the road have been tough. The Hornets seem to rise to the occasion and they play hard on their own pitch. Caps were missing their scrum leader, Glen McKinnon, who was part of a club wedding party. Also missing was prop Jesse Ryan who usually starts or comes in as a reserve and Sam Franklin who played fullback last week. They were also without injured Jeremy Simon who is the regular number 10 and the leagues leading kicker. To say that there was concern in the Capilano camp is an understatement. Caps were in need of a win to keep in contention for a home playoff match. The deck was shuffled, Phil Le Lieve, the kiwi who normally plays fullback or wing would play number 10. Johnny Adams who normally plays reserve scrum half would start at fullback. The place kicking duties would be handled by Chris Robinson. Mike McDonald, a back row player who played on the 2012 Cup winning team, has made a comeback and started at flanker. Jordan Reid-Harvey played number 8. Reid Tucker is back in the engine room. The team needed to respond positively, players needed to step up, the Caps needed to demonstrate that they are not a one man band! The team needed a great team effort and that is what they received!
Phil Le Lieve opened the scoring for Caps, he took the ball at pace found a gap and turned on the jets. He sidestepped the fullback and scored under the posts. Chris Robinson notched the extras and Caps were up 7-0. It was a great start! Caps have been scoring first lately but more would be needed. Phil Le Lieve made a very similar run before off loading to Chris Robinson who finished it off. Chris then converted and it was 14-0. Nanaimo answered back shortly after with a smashing run by their large number 8 Taniela Tulia who was not going to be stopped. The conversion attempt was missed so it was 14-5. Nanaimo wasn’t finished. Caps tried to respond and made some ground following some good running by John Franklin but a forward pass stopped the movement. Nanaimo managed to turnover the ball and got away for another score. The conversion was made and it was 14-12. Caps responded and got the ball deep in the Nanaimo end. Caps looked like they scored but they were held up. Caps Jordan Henderson scored on the blind side off the ensuing scrum. The conversion attempt was wide and the score was 19-12 at the half.
Early in the second half Nanaimo made a promising run down the sideline but the Capilano defense stood firm. The ball was turned over and the ball went out to the backs who made substantial ground then cross kicked. Chris Robinson was close to gathering it in for another try but the Nanaimo player made a try saving run and just managed to get to the ball before Chris and cleared it with a huge kick. Johnny Franklin got the next try for Capilano and it was beauty. He broke through at full pace then chip kicked the ball, gathered it in on the bounce and went in under the posts. C-Rob made the conversion and it was 26-12. Nanaimo roared back after stealing a loose ball. They got over the line but were held up. They received a scrum at the 5 meter line and finished it off with a score that was converted to narrow the Cap lead to 26-19. Nanaimo looked to be coming back and a converted try would tie the score. There was no quit in this Nanaimo 15. They were pressing but Caps got a break and were awarded a penalty and cleared their line.
Caps struck next on a clever kick ahead by Chris Robinson that was taken in by Phil Le Lieve and it was 31-19. Caps had stretched the lead again but Nanaimo struck back with a try in the corner, following a penalty for a high tackle. It was now 31-24 still close and anyone's game. Chris Robinson got the next try for Caps finishing it off under the posts and then converting. It was no 38-24 and Capilano had some breathing space. There were lots of heavy hits Caps had a many phase stretch of good play and were awarded a penalty kick. Chris Robinson slotted it through and the final score was 41-24. This was a very good, hard fought rugby game. The victory didn’t come easy but it was very satisfying. The head coach Garth Prouse said “ we still have work to do but that was an excellent effort.” Nanaimo had graciously moved the games ahead so that those who had to get back for the wedding could do so by heli-jet. Thanks Nanaimo for the co-operation.
Congratulations to Jess Hanna, Caps Premier Women’s Captain, and Gary Cartwright a long time player and coach on their wedding. All the best to Tom Kirk one of the Capilano Gate Keepers on his recovery from a serious medical condition. We are all on your side Tom. All the best from the Capilano family!!! Thanks to Nanaimo for the great hospitality and thanks to the referee and his assistants. Go Caps!