VANCOUVER — He’s about the letter W more than any mash of numerical minutiae.
And when you talk about winners in the context of the 2019 B.C. high school football season, it’s impossible not to reference Vancouver College Fighting Irish senior Jason Soriano.
On Monday, Soriano was named the 2019 B.C. Secondary Schools Football Association’s Triple A MVP for the timeliness and the consistency of his skill delivery on both sides of the ball for an Irish team which faces Burnaby’s St. Thomas More Knights in a Subway Bowl semifinal this Saturday at B.C. Place Stadium.
South Delta quarterback Ben McDonald and STM defensive end Kaishaun Carter were named respective Offensive and Defensive MVPs.
Kelowna receiver Caeleb Schlachter, New Westminster defensive lineman Vishaan Narayan and Kelowna linebacker Tariq Brown were the only Grade 11’s named to spots on the provincial all-star team.
In his primary positions as the Irish’s top receiver and its fluid, positionally-sound free safety, Soriano has been the kind of player whose actions on the field are the absolute antithesis of superfluous.
A guest on the Varsity Letters podcast back on Nov. 6, Irish head coach Todd Bernett, reacting to news that his player had earlier been selected Western Conference Defensive Player of the Year, spoke to that rare trait.
“He has made multiple tackles at or behind the line of scrimmage and he has a few interceptions,” Bernett began, “but primarily the reason he was picked by the other coaches is that they realize that any given point, if you try to test him, he’s going to be in position and he’s probably going to make a play against your guy.”
If there was ever a fantasy pool for B.C. high school football players with a scoring system based on meaningful plays, it would be hard to top Soriano’s contributions.
“(With Soriano it’s) not just on strength of stats, but on being a talented guy who will be in the right spot,” the coach continued. “He was rightly selected (Western Conference AA Defensive MVP) but my goal for him in terms of provincial recognition… I truly believe he is the provincial Player of the Year overall and I will nominate him for that.”
Like he was looking into a crystal ball, that is exactly how the tier’s other head coaches saw things as well.
“He’s averaged over 40 yards per reception,” Bernett added a few weeks back of Soriano. “There are guys who have more receptions, but we haven’t needed him to make six, seven, 10 a game. We have only needed one or two. He’s averaging, I think, over 10 yards a carry, but he’s only made twentysomething carries because we haven’t needed multiple carries. He’s been energetic on offence at quarterback, a little at running back and definitely at receiver and I think his dynamic playmaking ability is really scary for other teams to deal with.”
BCSSFA PROVINCIAL ALL-STARS
OVERALL MVP — Jason Soriano (5-10, 180, WR, QB, RB, FS, Vancouver College, Grade 12)
MVP — Ben McDonald (6-0, 195, QB, South Delta, Grade 12)
Simon Smith (6-4, 285, Grade 12, Vancouver College); Matt Ounsted (6-3, 295, Mt. Douglas, Grade 12); Jason Wang (6-3, 250, Earl Marriott, Grade 12); Jaskirat Sanghera (6-3, 265, Seaquam, Grade 12); Pavan Kainth (6-4, 240, New Westminster, Grade 12)
Evan Paterson (6-2, 190, South Delta, Grade 12); Nolan Ulm (6-2, 195, Kelowna, Grade 12); Caeleb Schlachter (6-3, 185, Kelowna, Grade 11)
Jalem Catlin (5-11, 185, Abbotsford, Grade 12), Jhavoun Blake (6-0, 2-7, Rutland, Grade 12); Daesaun Johnson (5-11, 185, Vancouver College, Grade 12)
Sam La Roue (6-3, 195, Earl Marriott, Grade 12)
MVP — Kaishaun Carter (6-2, 245, St. Thomas More, Grade 12)
Vishaan Narayan (6-2, 263, New Westminster, Grade 11); Cody McMahon (6-4, 230, Mission, Grade 12); Kyle Dodd (6-1, 235, Lord Tweedsmuir, Grade 12), Ryan Hsiao (5-11, 200, Vancouver College, Grade 12)
Matt Hoag (5-11, 200, Vancouver College, Grade 12); Byron Ruvalcaba (6-1, 215, Earl Marriott, Grade 12); Jack Wagner (6-0, 210, St. Thomas More, Grade 12); Tariq Brown (5-10, 160, Kelowna, Grade 11)
Keijaun Johnson (5-10, 185, Vancouver College, Grade 12); Rickey Parsons (6-1, 170, St. Thomas More, Grade 12); Kai Harris (6-3, 170, Mt. Douglas, Grade 12); Blake Neufeld (5-11, 165, Abbotsford, Grade 12)
OTHER TOP GRADE 11s
Nick Osho (RB, St. Thomas More); Nate Beauchemin (QB, Kelowna)
If you’re reading this story or viewing these photos on any website other than one belonging to a university athletic department, it has been taken without appropriate permission. In these challenging times, true journalism will survive only through your dedicated support and loyalty. VarsityLetters.ca and all of its exclusive content has been created to serve B.C.’s high school and university sports community with hard work, integrity and respect. Feel free to drop us a line any time at firstname.lastname@example.org.