Athletics Review: April 19, 2009

Junior Girls Net First Soccer Victory
The Junior girls had a tough exhibition match against the Claremont Spartans last Tuesday. The Jags were short a few players but fought hard. Goalkeeper Shelby Clark held off numerous shots as the Spartans attacked our defensive line. The final score was 4-0 in favour of the Spartans, but it was a great learning experience for the team.

The girls had their first win of the season against St. Andrews last Thursday. St. Andrews played well, but after the first goal scored by Kelly Adam in the early minutes of the game, the Jags could smell victory and were unstoppable. Goals were scored by Mary Lapp (2), Teryl Noble (2), Emma Ronning-Philip and Maddy Goodman (2). It was the first game of the season where the girls had the majority of their team out and it showed in the final result. St. Andrews had numerous scoring opportunities but the defence worked hard to stop them. Shelby Clark saved some key shots during the game, awarding her with another shut-out.

The girls play their last league game on Tuesday of this upcoming week against the higher-ranked, Lambrick Park. The girls would like a win to secure a position in the city finals.

Junior Boys B Soccer
The Junior boys B team travelled to Parkland School for their last league game of the season. The boys started off well enough. Peter Harrison returned to the side after a brief spell out, and Goven Sandhu also returned to start in the middle of defence. Parkland came out strong and took an early lead, and after the first half the boys were down a few goals. In the second half, the team found their momentum and confidence, and managed to hold Parkland back. In the closing stages of the game, James Keech placed a beautiful ball in to Peter Harrison who directed it into the path of Marcel Sanati who curled the ball into the Parkland goal. The boys’ perseverance throughout the entire game was rewarded with a classy goal. With this loss, however, the boys’ season looks to be over for another year, as the teams above us still have games in hand.

The coaches would like to thank the players for all their hard work and dedication out on the pitch, at training sessions and in games. We hope to see them all out for soccer next season.

Senior Girls Soccer
The Senior girls soccer team started off the week with a game against rival Lambrick Park, who always prove to be tough competition. Early in the first half, Shelby Boehm put one past the keeper, on a breakaway that was nicely worked up from the back line. Lambrick battled back with a goal off a corner kick for a 1-1 score line at half time. The second half battle continued with both teams having chances at goal, but when the final whistle blew the score was still tied at 1-1.

Edward Milne forfeited the scheduled game for Wednesday which gave the team a much needed day off before the UVic Spring Classic Tournament. The only game of the tournament on Thursday was against AAA team, Belmont. The Blue Jags played extremely well, keeping possession for much of the game. Unfortunately, a couple of breakdowns defensively allowed Belmont to score twice in a 2-0 loss.

Friday’s games were against another AAA school, South Delta, who were a much stronger squad than the Belmont team. Much of the play was in the SMUS half of the field but the Jags defended well and had a few chances on attack. In the end, the much more physical play of South Delta rewarded them with two goals in the second half for a final 0-2 loss for SMUS. The second game on Friday was against Sahali from Kamloops. SMUS claimed a much needed victory, thanks to a goal from Lauren Kipp on a free kick early in the first half (1-0 final).

SMUS finished the round robin in 3rd place in the pool, which set up a matchup against AAA Vanier from Courtenay in the semi-final of Tier III on Saturday. The play was very even with both teams having numerous chances at goal. Vanier scored first, off a free kick just outside the 18 yard box which saw two Vanier players break through to goal. SMUS tied it up shortly after with a great re-direction from Junior team call-up Emma Ronning-Phillips. The game was looking to go to extra time when late in the game a Vanier striker notched one home on a great strike just inside the 18 yard box. The final 2-1 loss was the team’s last game.

All in all, it was a great tournament with the girls stepping up to play some really good quality soccer. Many thanks to the junior players who came out to play with the team. League play winds up this week with games against arch rival GNS, Vic High and Parkland.

Track and Field
The Blue Jags were at the UVic track again this past week for meet #3. Once again, the team experienced some success in the distance events. Top performers were Austin Smith (2nd in JB 800m), Cole Turner (4th in BB 800m) and Jocelyn Stedman (2nd in JG 3000m).

Middle School Rugby
Middle School rugby continued last week, beginning with the Grade 6 under 115lb team hosting Lansdowne on Tuesday. The Lansdowne team had some big and straight forward runners who made life difficult early on for the players. The Grade 6 team came back more and more as the game went on and secured a close win. Several of the 16 players showed great development, few more so than Byron Huang, Alex Caton and Graeme Hyde-Lay, in his first game of the season.

The Grade 6/7 under 135lb team faced Monterey, who played direct rugby. The SMUS 6/7 team took a while to adjust and the game went back and forth throughout, with the lead changing hands several times before the SMUS side snuck out a one-try win. Top performers on the day were hooker Marco Sanati, centre/fullback Jacob Wilson-Potter, centre Levi Supowitz and prop/centre Jordan Lane.

The Grade 7/8 under 175lb team rounded out the games on Thursday, hosting Glanford, a physical and well-drilled side. The opposition retained possession well and caused some early troubles for the 7/8 heavies. A number of penalties given away around the tackle and ruck area also put SMUS under much pressure. Once the heavies had the ball in their hands, they played some fine expansive rugby to score a number of tries to win. The steady play of flyhalf Dave Pollen and wing/centre Colton Stockus were critical on the day and the open field running of fullback/centre Dawit Workie was valuable. Wingers Mason Loewen and Alpha Williboordse also showed considerable development.

The Grade 7/8 under 155lb team will open the game action on Monday, April 20th with a trip to Bayside. The Grade 6 players are up next, travelling to Shoreline on Tuesday 21st, with the 6/7 players taking on Monterey Grade 7 team on Wednesday, April 22nd. The Grade 7/8 heavies round out the week travelling to Royal Oak on Thursday, April 23rd.

Field Hockey
On a beautiful spring afternoon at UVic’s prestigious water-based turf, SMUS and the Blue Mountain GS field hockey teams played out an entertaining game. This was the final match of the tour for the visiting Australians, but for some of the SMUS girls, it was their first competitive hockey for several months. Most of the play went down SMUS’s right hand side with Janine Hsu and Ceilidh Macleod running the midfield very effectively, and Emma Abrioux proving very capable with picking up attacking hits from Blue Mountain. Several chances were created by SMUS, but it was not until the introduction of Kirsten MacLeod into a centre forward role that the breakthrough came, with a well-taken shot eluding the Blue Mountain goalie.

Unfortunately, Ceilidh was forced off the field with a serious back injury just before half time, but SMUS re-grouped and played very solidly for the rest of the game, not allowing a shot on Nuraiyah Kassam in goal. Stand out players for SMUS, apart from Janine Hsu and Emma Abrioux, were the Grade 12 girls playing their last outdoor game for the school – Melissa Bosworth, Lauren Kipp, Steffi Duvenage, Ashley Solmer and, of course, Ceilidh MacLeod. All of them thoroughly deserve the accolades for all their efforts and contributions over their field-hockey careers. 

It was fine way to end their times here, although there is still a Staff-Student game coming up in May! After the game, it was great to see both teams mingling and socializing. The Blue Mountain rugby and hockey teams will now depart for Whistler and then back home.

SMUS 1-0 Blue Mountain GS

Senior Boys Rugby
It was an extremely busy and challenging week for the Senior boys rugby squad. First up was an away trip to Shawnigan, currently the #1 ranked team in BC. The 2nd XV match was hotly contested, but while SMUS battled bravely against bigger and very well drilled opponents, the result was never in doubt as the home side emerged victorious 29-5. Nonetheless, there was some consolation in a superb 40m try scoring run by outside centre Steve Meng, while flankers Brad Sawyer and Ingemar de Wet, as well as scrum-half Reed Plasterer, toiled manfully.

From start to finish, the 1st XV match, from a SMUS perspective, left a lot to be desired. Whether lacking belief or short on confidence, the team basically failed to fire a shot over the 70 minutes, eventually going down five tries to one in a 34-13 loss. While a penalty goal by Tom Bridger produced an early 3-0 lead, SMUS soon gave way to Shawnigan.

Down 19-3 at the break, SMUS clawed back another penalty goal, but then overthrew an attacking 5m lineout and missed a glorious scoring opportunity. Two more home tries suggested a rout might be on the cards, but a late Mike Fuailefau tally, on a fine pass from captain John Humphries, put a somewhat more satisfactory shine on the final score.

A chance for redemption came three days later with the visit of Blue Mountain Grammar School from Australia. As a curtain raiser, a combined SMUS/BMGS 2nd XV squad took on St. Francis of Calgary, with the Albertans ending up 22-10 winners in an exciting and well-played match. Some of the home ball retention was top quality, with winger Rory Latimer, fly half Alex Harvey and newcomer Justus Koenigs all performing well.

At 1st XV level, huge credit must go to the Blue Mountain side, which played a counterpuncher’s role to absolute perfection. Starved of possession for long periods, thanks to a hugely improved SMUS forward effort, the visitors tackled like demons and turned a limited number of scoring chances into 19 points! On the other side, despite an avalanche of ball, SMUS somehow managed only a late try by lock Chad Margolus, with at least three players losing the ball over or on the line. Several other golden scoring chances were similarly submarined.

Though the team has not quite attained the solid, confident play required, there are seven weeks left in the season and ample time to improve, with the expected return of Senior players Masaki Kunimoto, Beau Parker and Jared Sweet an added bonus.

Next up for the squad are away matches to Cowichan/Ladysmith on April 23 and a trip to St. Georges on April 28.

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