UBCOB Ravens – March 2024

Ravens Too Much for CW: Ravens 71 – Castaways 14
Match Report by Peter MacDonald

On a sunny, warm, late winter day at Windsor Park the Ravens surprisingly proved too much for the host Castaway Wanderers. Apart from an early Raven try, where centre Ethan Berry put away left winger Aga Ligamy, it was the expected hard-fought game in which two strong packs duked it out evenly… until the 20 minute mark.

At the quarter mark CW were on the attack when a pass in the backfield went to ground. Aaron Mclelland picked it up and raced 50 metres down the left sideline to start a flurry of four tries over a 10 minute span. Brothers Frank and Don Carson were instrumental in the next try as they laid off a ruck and on receiving the ball occupied multiple tacklers and passed out of the contact a la Nicola Jokic freeing Mclelland to streak away again. And so it went to 31-0 by 30 minutes with CW resigned to trying to stem the flow as best it could for the duration.

To use a couple of hockey analogies to explain things, CW turned the ball over at the blue line a few too many times leaving their backs (usually) defending big overlaps and at other times CW obliged the Ravens and played ‘firewagon” rugby which favoured the speedy Ravens as they threw the ball around and covered the whole field with switches of direction and long passes. The CW forwards played a hard game but little knock-ons in tight and the odd miscue left their young backfield overwhelmed at times. Points rolled up at a point per minute for much of the game despite the impression that the hosts were stuck in and were not playing that badly.

Ligamy (3), Mclelland (2), Billy Wickham, Nico Leonard (2), Grant Crowell, Frank Carson and Jake Holmes were the Raven try scorers. Flanker David O’Donoghue was a strong presence at the breakdown, his partner Joe Locke was rampaging as usual in attack and hooker Viaans Wolmarans lurked out wide and joined the attack regularly. Cole Keffer, Nick Blain and Harjun Gill were prominent in the backs taking advantage of the gaps and moving the ball smoothly.

It was a tough day at the office for CW but Ollie Nott, Gavin Kratz and the CW forwards put in a good shift but on this day to no avail.

Next week it is off to Klahanie for the second of four road games. A perfect opportunity for the Highlanders staff to scout the Ravens and see if there is any talent to mine.

Posted in BC Premier, Front Page.