Athletics Review: April 12, 2009

Strong Showing for SMUS up at the Track
The track and field team has been training hard up at UVic’s Centennial Stadium. Last week, the team competed in their second meet. Some great results were had in the middle distance races, including, a 2nd place finish by Leo Marchand in the senior boys 1500 m. Tyler Olson finished in 3rd place in the junior boys 1500 m and Cole Turner placed 6th in the bantam boys 1500 m. Jocelyn Stedman finished in 7th place in the junior girls 1500 m. In the sprints, Sky Richards raced to a 7th place finish in the junior girls 100 m.

Senior Boys Rugby
The Senior rugby squads hosted Brentwood April 9 in key second-round Island Premier matches. When the dust had settled, both schools had managed a victory, with SMUS claiming the 1st XV scalp.

In the 1st XV game, SMUS showed a number of positional changes from the GP Vanier encounter a week before, most notably through the introduction of Jared Sweet as open-side flanker. The former centre fully justified this move, with a titanic display over the 70 minutes, making countless tackles, stealing ball at the breakdown, and generally setting a tremendous example. Others who made a good impression were debutantes Alex Harvey and Charlie Southwell, who combined well in the back three with left wing Marc van der Wal. Likewise, off the bench, lock Andy Erasmus performed well during his first significant minutes of play at the Senior level.

With flanker Luke McCloskey out with an ankle injury, the team was delighted to welcome back lock John Humphries, who gave a captain’s lead in the tight phases while also pulling off two huge try-saving tackles. Up front, hooker Won-Jin Kim performed well, while, in the backs, centre Tom Bridger ran with authority.

After a somewhat careful opening, SMUS scored first with a fine team try, as Humphries squeezed over near the posts after a multi-phase move. The captain was back in action shortly after, combining nicely with Sasha Gray down the short side to allow the scrum half in for a second tally. One Bridger conversion extended the lead to 12-0 with just minutes to play in the first half. Unfortunately, Brentwood scored almost immediately afterward. 

The second half was something of a stalemate for the first 20 minutes, before Brentwood turned the screws in an attempt to snatch the win. Only some desperate, scrambling home defence, spearheaded by Sweet and Humphries, saved the line, with Brentwood twice held up in goal and then tackled into the corner flag on full time. The game ended 12-7, with SMUS capturing the win and first place in the ultra competitive Island Premier series.

The 2nd XV game had much to offer also. Brentwood put in a fine all round display, running from everywhere and offloading with abandon. Still, for long periods, the SMUS defence held firm, with wing Rory Latimer, centre Steve Meng, prop Brad Sawyer and lock Ingemar de Wet well to the fore. However, the dam finally did break, with Brentwood crafting three well-taken tries, all of which were converted. A last gap SMUS move perhaps should have produced a consolation score, but replacement fullback Jamie Saunders was held up just short of the line.

Next up for both teams are much anticipated away matches to Shawnigan on April 16. Centre Mike Fuailefau, fresh off a fine performance for Canada U17 at the Millfield Festival in England, should be back in the SMUS line-up, while speedster Beau Parker hopefully can rejoin the squad before the end of the month.

Junior Girls Soccer
The Junior girls A soccer team kicked off their season during the final day of Spring Break with a well-matched game against Reynolds. It was a windy day and the Jags had the wind at their backs for the first half. The girls created a number of good scoring opportunities and twice caught the opposing goalkeeper out of the net in the second half. Although the Jags dominated, Reynolds scored a last minute goal to win the game 1-0. Shelby Clark, Annie Pike, and Maddy Petersen all played well in this game.

The girls played their second game of the season against Spectrum on Tuesday April 7th. It was goalie Selby Knudsen’s first game of the season and she should be congratulated on a shut out. Unfortunately, Spectrum’s goalie also had a shutout to make it a tied game at 0-0. This was no reflection of the dynamic of the game, as SMUS dominated for the majority of the game once again, and the forwards had a lot of intensity. All eleven of the girls played a full game, as many players were injured or still on break. The support and encouragement from Laura Simandl who was injured and unable to play coupled with some great coaching by Ms. Lloyd makes for a promising start to the season. Special mention goes to Annie Pike and Teryl Noble who were solid for the entire game.

On Thursday, the Jags hosted Oak Bay on their home field. The Jags were still short on players and unfortunately lost 2-0. The Jags played extremely well and had numerous scoring opportunities but were unable to elude the Oak Bay goalie. Special mention goes to Camille Stone who played extremely well as sweeper and then was pushed up to the forward line at the end of the second half in hopes of getting a goal. Although the start of the season has not been successful on the scoreboard, the team is strong and looking forward to having more success next week when they face Claremont on Tuesday for an exhibition game and host St. Andrews on Thursday.

Junior Boys B Soccer
The second week of matches for the Junior Boys B Soccer team saw the team secure their first victory of the season. In their first match, at home to the Claremont B side, the boys fought hard and played with passion; they fully deserved their victory. Goals came from open play and from the spot. Early in the first half, after some great work in the midfield, James Keech found Liam Maclure with a great through ball. Maclure finished with confidence and put us ahead. Close to the end of the first half, however, Claremont evened the score with an unstoppable shot. Up to that point, Connor Thomson had been unbeatable in goal. Midway through the second half, after a great deal of open play, James Keech was brought down in the box. Peter Harrison stepped up to the spot and put a second goal past Claremont’s keeper. Claremont increased the pressure for the remainder of the match, but the boys defended strongly to finish with a 2-1 victory.

In their second game of the week, the boys hosted Edward Milne. Despite an early goal through some great play from Liam Maclure, the team succumbed to their opponents from Sooke. Robert Wyatt was strong, quick, and determined at the back. The boys pressed far up the pitch until the final whistle, hitting the post on several occasions, but the ball was not to find the back of the net in this match and the game ended 2-1 in our opponent’s favour.

The team travels to Parkland School this Wednesday for what promises to be a great game.

Senior Girls Soccer
This week the Senior Girls had a tough four game schedule on the heels of the Chilliwack tournament. The first game was at home to St. Andrews where the girls started off slowly but quickly picked up the pace to soundly defeat them 7 – 0. Goal scorers were Samm Dark (3), Shelby Boehm (2), Anna Fretz (1) and Lisa Evans (1).

On Tuesday, the Blue Jags played PCS in a hard-fought game and found themselves down 1-0 at the half. An early second half goal by striker Lisa Evans brought levelled the score and a superb strike from 25 yards out by Lauren Kipp secured the 2-1 win.

On Wednesday, the team was up at the turf at UVic to play St. Margaret’s. This pitch was perfect for the skilful SMUS team, as they dominated the play, keeping SMS pinned in their half for much of the game. Full credit to the opposing goalie who stopped a barrage of shots throughout the game, keeping it to a reasonable 3-0 win for SMUS. Goal scorers were Teryl Noble, Ciara Glen and Shelby Boehm

The fourth and final game of the week was against Esquimalt. The team showed incredible grit and determination, as tired legs and muscle strains of the rigorous week were starting to show. The team controlled the play for much of the game but failed to score in the first half. Ailing players Samm Dark and Lauren Kipp came off the bench in the second half to give us some much needed fire power up front. Both scored to give SMUS a 2-0 win.

Middle School Rugby
Middle School rugby began play this past week with 50 players and all four teams in action. The Grade 7/8 heavies began the action on Monday with a win at GNS. Top performers on the day were backs Dawit Workie and Adrian Sanchez, but credit also goes to newcomers Mason Loewen and Clarence Choy, both of whom scored tries.

Tuesday April 7th saw the Grade 6 team away at Colquitz. This small but fast and skilled group of athletes proved too strong for Colquitz, showing much promise for the season ahead. All players had their moments, including Matty McColl, Mitch Newman and Owen Sudul moving to the fore.

Wednesday, April 8th saw the Grade 7/8 heavies away at Journey in Sooke, and the Grade 6/7 players in action in their first game at SMUS against GNS. The Grade 6/7 team played well above expectations with a sound win, clearly showing that the coaching of Mr. Bryant Hollingworth was paying off. All players put in some good play, with Jacob Wilson-Potter, Liam Keeler-Young, Zach Khan and Levi Supowitz leading the way. In the Grade 7/8 heavies match, the steady play of scrumhalf Sam Reid and flyhalf, Dave Pollen to kept things under control. Grade 7 player Abrahim Kharaghani also played well. As it was, a win was secured.

In the final games of the week, the Grade 7/8 lights saw action on Thursday against both Lansdowne and Colquitz schools. The team opened the day in a very close and well-fought game against a comparably sized and skilled Lansdowne team. The Colquitz team however were not so comparably sized and the Grade 7/8 lights found it hard going but never gave up. Top performers from amongst the group were Keenan Manhas in a new position as scrumhalf, centres Colton Stockus and Mason Loewen, and Grade 7 player Nic Cunningham.

Three of the four teams are back in action this week, with the Grade 6 team hosting Lansdowne on Tuesday 14th, the Grade 6/7 team at Monterey on Wednesday 15th, and the Grade 7/8 heavies team hosting Glanford on Thursday 16th. The Grade 7/8 lights team next plays on Monday 20th at Bayside.

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