EMILY VOSSLER OF Vanier hangs on but can't stop a speedy Ellie White of Cowichan scoring the winning try in overtime in the AAA Island girls high school rugby championship final at Brentwood College School on Saturday.

Towhees off to B.C. rugby championships

Vanier senior girls lose Island final in overtime to longtime rival Cowichan

One of the keenest rivalries in B.C. high school sports was renewed Saturday at Brentwood Bay when the G.P. Vanier Towhees took on the Cowichan Thunderbirds for the Vancouver Island AAA senior girls rugby championship.

This is the seventh year in a row Vanier has played Cowichan in the Island final and every game has been a close battle, noted Vanier coach Dwayne Mills. This year Cowichan is ranked #1 in the province and defeated Vanier twice during league play.  But Vanier was ready to play as for the first time in two months they fielded a full starting lineup as a number of players fought through injuries to strap on the cleats.

From the opening kickoff it was a battle as both teams sought to assert themselves, yet neither was successful. Buoyed by the return of Claire Janssen and newly named captain Georgia Bellamy, the Vanier forwards put constant pressure on the Cowichan pack as they struggled to move the ball down the field, while the backs under the direction of Emily Vossler moved the ball well around the field. Despite some excellent runs by inside centre Madi Gold, the score remained tied at half time.

In the second half the Vanier girls increased their pressure and pace to force Cowichan deep into their end and after a kick to try to relieve the Vanier attack, fullback Samantha Rumney ran the ball back and successfully scored in the corner.  A very narrow miss on a very difficult convert by Emma Rigsby opened the door for Cowichan to strike back as they sensed an upset in the making.

Over the final 15 minutes Cowichan maintained constant pressure in the Vanier end, but the Towhee girls dug deep under the hard defence of flankers Gloria Vankerrebroek and Danelle Campbell and the outside defence of backs Kassandra Sewell and Sienna Moir.

Unfortunately, on the last play of the game, Cowichan outworked the exhausted Vanier scrum and stole the ball only to score a few phases later during injury time. The convert was unsuccessful, the teams headed to sudden death overtime.

The Vanier girls, despite losing a number of starters throughout the game due to injuries, continued to fight in the overtime, but the well-conditioned Cowichan squad capitalized on some mental miscues to score between the posts three minutes in to win 10-5.

It was a great showing by the Vanier girls who are finally beginning to become a more cohesive group after a season full of injuries and roster turn-over.  Fortunately they are peaking at the right time and with this close loss to the #1-ranked Cowichan team they have realized that they have the potential to beat any team in the province. The Towhees now move on to the BCHSGRA provincial championships at UBC on May 22-25.

 

– Vanier Towhees Rugby

 

 

Just Posted

Heliports certified at Comox Valley, Campbell River hospitals

Both sites should see heliports up and running by late summer

Crown Isle acquires Longlands Golf Course

The Crown Isle Resort and Golf Community just got a little bit… Continue reading

115 new wildfires burning across B.C. due to 19,000 lightning strikes

More fires expected to start today, says BC Wildfire Service officials

Three small wildfires burning west of Courtenay

The blazes are the result of a brief thunderstorm last night

Outdoor classroom coming to Huband Park Elementary

The project has been a collaboration of various community groups, says PAC member

VIDEO: Trades jobs the way of the future on Vancouver Island?

Hundreds of people attend Black Press Career Fair in Nanaimo

UPDATED: Crown appeals B.C. polygamous leader’s acquittal in child bride case

James Oler had been charged with taking his underage daughter to the U.S. to marry her off

Housing would cut number of B.C.’s vulnerable re-admitted to hospital: study

New SFU work shows just how costly frequent hospitalization is to the province’s health care system

Disney production filming at Victoria’s Government House today

Made-for-TV movie will feature the inside of the Rockland Avenue mansion

3 dead after semi-truck collides with car on B.C. Interior highway

Police said the intersection between Highway 97 and Highway 99 would remain closed for some time

Keep your pets safe while driving

ICBC and SPCA join forces on pet safety awareness initiative

Reports of explosion in Okanagan turn out to be squirrel vs. power line

The noise was described as ‘similar to a shotgun blast’ that shook the Earth

A look at what Canadian teams might do in the 1st round of the NHL draft

Montreal, Ottawa, Vancouver and Edmonton in top 10 of upcoming draft

Koko, the gorilla who knew sign language, dies at 46

Western lowland gorilla, 46, died in her sleep in California

Most Read