Athletics Review: May 10, 2010

Middle School Rugby
In the past week in Middle School rugby, the Grade 6 team traveled to face Monterey, where they also faced Cedar Hill. The work done at practice on defence pattern and tackling clearly paid dividends, as the team kept both oppositions under much pressure including a goal-line stand out for quite some time against Cedar Hill. Many of the sixteen players available played well and deserve mention, with Josh Kahn, Jonas Robinson, the Currie twins Aidan and Sean, and birthday boy Mark Piazza leading the way on the day.

The two Grade 7 teams were also in action, with the White team traveling to Cedar Hill, whilst the Blue team hosted Royal Oak. Both teams scored solid victories, but more importantly continued their positive team and individual developments. Several players performed very well, few more so than scrumhalf Dave Cunningham, centre Alex Caton, wings Ryan Cui and David Lee, and Mitch Newman in a new position at hooker. Continued work is still needed on getting shoulders in when tackling, and on getting players to the breakdown area quickly are still needed.

This week SMUS hosts the Victoria area end of season jamborees with the Grade 6 jamboree on Tuesday May 11th and the Grade 7 jamboree on Wednesday May 12th. The SMUS teams then travel to St. George’s School, Vancouver on Thursday May 20th for the ISA tournaments to round out their seasons.

This past weekend, the SMUS rowing team attended the Shawnigan Lake School Regatta. It was the final regatta of our season on the west coast. It was great to have warm sunny days for a change, but this played havoc with the water, delaying the racing and finally causing the regatta to be called off before all the finals could be raced on Sunday. Many of the final placings on Sunday were determined by the racing done in the heats. Our own Robert Wyatt in the Junior A Novice Boys 1X was the last race run at the regatta before the rough water cancelled the rest of racing. Sitting in second place with 250m left, Robert dug in and made up open water to finish a half a boat length ahead to win the race. It brought the spectators to their feet!

Our small team of 20 athletes qualified for 14 finals with three gold finishes, two silver finishes, two bronze finishes, two fourth place finishes, as well as one fifth and sixth place finishes.

  • Gold: Junior B Girl’s 4+, Junior B Girls Novice 4X+, Junior A Boy’s Novice 1X (Robert Wyatt)
  • Silver: Junior A Girl’s 4x, Junior A Novice Boys 4X+
  • Bronze: Junior A Girl’s 2-, Junior B Boys 4+
  • Fourth: Junior A Girl’s Novice 1X (Gwendolen O’Connor)
  • Fifth: Junior B Boys 2X
  • Sixth: Junior A Girls 2-, Junior A Boys 4X

A great weekend of racing! Congratulations to the entire SMUS rowing team!

Our final racing event will be the Canadian Secondary School Rowing Association Championships (CSSRA’s) June 4-6 in St. Catharines, Ontario.

Junior Boys Rugby
The Grade 9 squad defeated Ladysmith 46-36 in a fourteen-try thriller. Some of the attacking rugby on display, from both sides, was most enjoyable to watch. Not to be outdone, the Grade 10 players won all three of their games, defeating Claremont, GP Vanier and Brentwood, and scoring 22 tries in the process. And, while the backs grabbed the scoring headlines, it was the work of the forward pack, led by hooker Peter Harrison, props Jacku Chuang and Jacob Duvenage, lock Truan Forsyth and flankers Marcel Sanati and Quinn Kliman, that set the platform for success.

The Grade 10 team’s demanding season now continues, as the team looks forward to a May 13 showdown at Shawnigan. At stake is the Island Grade 10 Premier league title and a berth in the Island Junior Boys final two days later.

Senior Boys Rugby
Alas, the picture was not as rosy at Senior level. With the two-point Alumni Weekend loss to Oak Bay still stinging, the 1st XV travelled to Courtenay to take on a big and robust GP Vanier side. Unfortunately, the sour taste did not improve, as a late home score allowed the Towhees to scrape home 24-20. Of much greater concern was the loss of centre Jure Erlic, halfback Marc vander Wal and No. 8 Eali Hopper, all of whom fell victim to the injury bug. Indeed, the game descended further into chaos in the final frantic minutes, with the referee giving conflicting information to the two teams as to the actual score!

A battered SMUS lineup then had to back up at Brentwood two days later. With captain Won Jin Kim also incapacitated with a sore neck, the team that finished the game featured only seven players who had started a week earlier vs Oak Bay. Nonetheless, having scored three fine tries, SMUS led 20-14 with only four minutes to play, before two crazy decisions gifted the game to the hosts: an ill advised tap and run from a handy penalty position led to a turnover and a Brentwood try while a second attempted tap and run ended with the ball being thrown forward after a wild attack on the try line.

A ten-day break, before the Howard Russell semifinal vs Reynolds on May 17, will hopefully allow the squad to heal up, consider its tactical approach and rediscover its mojo.


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