Shawnigan Lake's Dakota Stevenson (right) gets grabby with Carson Graham's Austin James during Stadium Series Premier League clash Friday at Klahanie Park. (Photo by Blair Shier property of 2019. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Rugby

Varsity Letters B.C. High School Rugby Report Stadium Series Rd. 2 edition: Stags, Saints, Barbs, Sun Devils all part of our 15 match reports

LANGLEY — Welcome back to a full slate of action in the world of B.C. boys high school rugby. 

Key weekday matches as well as round two of Stadium Series 2019 highlight the docket:





NORTH VANCOUVER — Andrew Doyle didn’t need to consult any statistical package to know just how tough the host Carson Graham Eagles were to try to slow when his Shawnigan Lake Stags traveled for a Premier League showdown which also doubled as part of the Stadium Series’ second round of action Friday at Klahanie.

“Without a doubt, this was the most physical encounter of the season,” Doyle said in reflection on Monday. “Our defence was good. I don’t have the tackle count, but there were some very sore bodies on Saturday morning

“The big Carson pack played a tight game,” continued Doyle of an Eagles’ group which enjoyed a great deal of possession. “They ran with purpose and were very effective running close to the breakdown.”

Sore but happy, Vancouver Island’s Shawnigan Lake Stags climbed into No. 1 in the most recent Quad A rankings following its win over Carson Graham. (Photo by Blair Shier property of 2019. All Rights Reserved)

Mohamen Elendawi was exceptional leading the defensive charge for the winners while Malcolm Shields and Brenner Kalava in the pack also shone.

Graeme Norris was very comfortable with ball in hand for the Stags, scoring a pair of tries.

“That Carson team was very good, and Austin James caused us problems every time he touched the ball,” Doyle added of the Eagles’ stalwart whose big run helped set up home team’s lone score of the game from Mayhar Hosseini. “I have no doubt they will continue to excel as their season unfolds. It is turning out to be a very competitive (Premier) league with everyone capable of beating any team on their day.”

Dakota Stevenson and Ciaran Breen scored one try apiece in the win while Jamin Hodgkins booted three converts and a penalty.

“Shawnigan was very good in defence and constantly turned the ball over after tackling us,” admitted Carson head coach Glen McKinnon who got a strong game from Max Fabre at fullback. “We’ve got lots to work on.”


VANCOUVER — The B.C. 7’s title they won last week spoke to the depth and skill of their XV’s, yet nothing would speak louder about Quad-A No. 2 St.George’s than the Saints response to their most recent Premier League clash, a 22-19 loss recently to North Van’s Carson Graham Eagles.

“That was a tough loss to Carson and we needed to get back on track by following our game plan and playing to our strengths,” said St. George’s head coach Mike Stiles after his team gave every indication of its vast powers in a decisive win over Surrey’s visiting Mariners.

Just minutes into the game, St. George’s scored first with a try from winger Dillon Hamilton. Moments later, Saints hooker Matteo Mitchell scored from a tight ball on the EMS try line. With Thomas Kirkwood good on both conversions, Saints led 14-0.

Centre Patrick Feng, running a simple switch with fly-half Jacob Bourne, was next to find touch.

Liam Cooper then scored, running a support line off a set piece move, and with Kirkwood’s third conversion, the score was 26-0.

Earl Marriott responded with a mismatch on the right wing from a scrum, and with a successful conversion, it was 26-7.

St. George’s, however, had a lot left in tank.

Jacob Bourne scored three more tries, and Hamilton would add his second. Grant Newell-Madu and Carter Lewis scored once each while Kirkwood added three more conversions Cam Lyman one of his own to wrap up the scoring.

SMUS ball-carrier Jin Woo Park is surround by Oak Bay Barbs during Saturday’s 25th edition of The Boot. (Photo by Kyle Slavin property of St.Michaels University School athletics 2019. All Rights Reserved)



VICTORIA — You can call Jack Carson the Jack of all trades and the master of all.

Oak Bays’ transcendent senior fly half, in his third year with the Barbarians’ 1st XV scored, two tries and kicked five conversions and a penalty, his 23 points carrying the day as the visiting side claimed the 25th inter-school edition of The Boot on Saturday at SMUS.

“We just had no answer for Jack,” admitted SMUS head coach Ian Hyde-Lay as his No. 2-ranked Double-A team fell to the No. 4-ranked Quad A visitors. “Like all fine players, he always appeared to have more time on the ball than everyone else. He absolutely tore us apart with his passing, running, kicking and tactical awareness.”

The Barbs jumped to an early 10-0 lead and then took a stranglehold on the game with converted tries immediately before and after half time.

SMUS did battle back from the early deficit, with tries from Ben Shaw and Jin Woo Park, backed up by a Will Kinahan conversion, allowing the Blue Jags to close to 15-12 at the 25-minute mark.

Unfortunately for the host Blue Jags, an attacking five-meter scrum opportunity was then wasted, with Oak Bay sweeping down field to score a fine try of its own.

In the second half, the Barbarians immediately extended their lead to 29-12, and six minutes later crossed again to go up 34-12.

While SMUS did manage two more tallies, via Jacob Robb and Ty Olynyk, Oak Bay replied with several of its own through Henry Down, Nick Bamford and Leo Mah.

To close proceedings, a Carson diagonal kick near mid-field hit winger Brandon Thom in full stride behind the Jags defence. Two passes later, centre Zack Moncton completed a sensational score.

A SMUS victory would have brought the overall series record to an even .500, however the Barbs now sit with a 13-11-1 advantage.



MILL BAY — Last season, the South Delta Sun Devils learned how to step their game up a notch and chase down a provincial title.

This season, as the No. 1-ranked team in TripleA, they are learning how to deal with being the team to beat in the eyes of their opposition.

“We knew we were going to be in tough,” South Delta head coach Spencer Baines said of traveling to Brentwood College on Vancouver Island to face Victoria’s No. 4-ranked Claremont Spartans. “Claremont is always tough, always disciplined and just as we expected, we got a tight, physical battle.”

South Delta scored early by piling up many phases of attack, ending in a Max Cantlon tally which Evan Paterson converted for a 7-0 lead.

Claremont’s Grade 12 centre, Connor Way, however, responded shortly after with an interception try which he ran in from the attacking 22-metre line. Keegan Neary converted it to level the score at 7-7.

The game then proceeded with both teams exchanging tries, highlighted by strong defence on both ends, with neither team giving up much yardage during each phase. South Delta’s Paterson was brilliant, nailing two very tough sideline conversions as part of the victory.

Claremont, like many other schools, was coming off a gruelling and physically punishing B.C. 7’s Championship the weekend prior at St. George’s.

The Spartans were hit hard by the injury and illness bugs and were only able to dress 15 seniors for the match.

No. 8 Ryder Heaney-Corns scored a pair of tries for the Spartans while Grade 10 fullback Keaton Williams added the other. Senior flanker Udhay Nijjer impressed for Claremont with his tackling and his energy.


MILL BAY — Caught off guard by the power of Lord Tweedsmuir’s centres and forwards, Courtenay’s G.P. Vanier Towhees found themselves in a bit of a pickle.

Trailing 17-5 at the break and 22-15 early in the second half, however, the Towhees found their game, finishing up on a 24-5 run to beat their Surrey rivals in a Stadium Series rematch from last season.

Tweedsmuir opened the scoring on a three-metre dive by scrappy scrum-half Colby Nestman, but Vanier was able to equalize at 5-5 off a try by A.J. Julien.

Lord Tweedsmuir re-claimed the lead on a darting scramble by prop forward Brad Holdford, who bulldozed his way across the try line after rambling from 30 metres out on a rear wind line-out formation.

Talented and versatile Grade 12 fullback and standoff Adam Kwok converted, to make the score 12-5 for the visitors from Cloverdale.

Then, with only moments before half-time, Tweedsmuir speedster Yosef Drysdale ran 40 metres to daylight, eluding several Vanier defenders to make it 17-5 at the half.

Vanier was able to score a pair of unconverted tries early in the second half, from Julien and later Kevin Jennie, who took a pass wide from scrum-half Ben Julien, to pull within 17-15.

Drysdale, however, scored his second try of the day to make it 22-15 for Lord Tweedsmuir.

From that point forward, the match belonged to the Towhees.

Jennie was awarded a penalty try for a high tackle, Kobe Grimolfson-Brillon scored a try, and then Ben Julien a pair, with converts coming from Sky Smyrchinsky.

Holdford added Tweedsmuir’s final try.


MILL BAY — Fly half Dylan Cleaver went under the posts after a dummy pass from a penalty tap 10 metres out from the goal line as the Islanders beat Richmond’s Wildcats in a Stadium Series clash at Brentwood College.

Winger Brad Wilson was later on the receiving end of one of Cleaver’s cross-field kicks which he ran in to make the score 12-0.

McMath got a try late after a poor kick-and-chase from the Islanders to make the final 12-5.

Lord Byng’s Nate Barrington-Dom (left with ball) scampers to first try of the day Friday against host Penticton Lakers. (Photo by Ian MacPhee property of Lord Byng athletics 2019. All Rights Reserved)


PENTICTON —  Landon Clironomos scord a pair of first-half tries while Nate Berrington-Dom and Luke Crossman also crossed the try line as the visiting Grey Ghosts showed no ill effects from a five-hour bus ride to McNicoll Park.

Byng led 28-0 at the half en route to its Stadium Series win.

While Penticton was resilient and scored the first points of the second half, the Grey Ghosts soon regained momentum, getting four unanswered tries, two of which came from No. 8 Quentin Watt. Wing Cole Hamilton and centre Sam Cochrane scored the others while Clironomos converted seven of the team’s eight tries.


LANGLEY —Housa Kim’s try over the final 10 minutes of play proved to be a second-half highlight for the host Eagles who rallied from a narrow 15-12 halftime deficit  to defeat the visiting Highlanders.

The second half started similar to the first half with the No.9 Highlanders taking it to No. 7 R.E. Mountain in the clash of Triple A Top 10 teams.

As the score hung in the balance, the Eagles started to gain some traction in their team game and began to control the ball and territorial possession.

West Vancouver had gotten off to an early lead at 8-0, but then the momentum switched to the Eagles with Ethan Bernardin’s signature juking style cutting through the defence for a try.



MILL BAY — After surrendering the first points of the match off a converted try, West Vancouver’s No. 1-ranked, defending B.C. Double A champion Cavaliers responded by scoring 35 of the match’s final 45 points en route to a convincing win over its No. 3-ranked hosts.

Collingwood got the rally started when Joel Abdel-Barr cleverly quick-tapped and scored under the posts. Subsequent tries by Lucas Okano and Oliver Kodet gave Collingwood a 17-7 lead, but Brentwood scored to make it 17-12 at half.

A Graeme Neill-Klein penalty made it 20-12. Nate Holm then powered his way to make it 27-12 before Neill-Klein made a fantastic break from inside the Collingwood 22m line and then off-loaded 80 metres later to Thomas Simon for a try that made it 32-12.

Brentwood scored to make the score to 32-17 before Neill-Klein finished the scoring with a 38m penalty.

“It was a classic Collingwood-Brentwood battle where the skill level and passion was very high,” said Cavs’ head coach David Speirs. “It was hard-hitting and fast paced.”

No. 4 ROCKRIDGE 31 No. 6 D.W. POPPY 5

LANGLEY — Eric Peiffer made several exciting runs and scored a pair of tries as West Vancouver’s No. 4-ranked Rockridge Ravens defeated the host and No. 6-ranked Redhawks of D.W. Poppy.

No. 8 Matt Lindsay, along with teammates Anson Adshade and Alex Guarasci were also standouts in the win.

“It was a good defensive effort,” said Ravens head coach Perino Zambon. “We had to absorb a lot of pressure from a hard-running Poppy team that held the ball through multiple phases. I thought that today, a number of our scores came as a result of some strong counterattacks with our players running some good support lines off of breaks.”

“They were an upbeat squad,” Poppy head coach Kyle Barry admitted of Rockridge, who feasted early on the unprepared RedHawks and were up 14-0 just seven minutes into the game. 

Poppy re-gained control and yet for a solid five minutes could not break the stellar Rockridge defence.

The Ravens led 26-0 at half.

Poppy was finally able to put five points on the board with a try from winger Ty Yakabuski in the second half.


VANCOUVER — A prime-time 2:30 p.m. kick-off time at their home pitch enabled a strong contingent of student body support to crowd the sidelines Friday.

Mitchell Morgan and the rest of East Vancouver’s Double-A No. 5 Sir Charles Tupper Tigers took full advantage.

Tupper came flying out of the gates and built a 19-5 halftime lead to the delight of the home fans. 

Langley, however, scored three straight tries to take a 24-19 lead with 15 minutes to play. 

The Tigers were able to dig deep and came back with a series of plays which started from their line out and which culminated in the third try of the day for Morgan who was also able to add the convert so critical to his team’s two-point win.

Morgan had three converts on the day, while teammate Trew Petersen added a try.


BURNABY — The expansionists keep piecing their broken hearts back together again, and they’re finding themselves stronger for the effort.

Thomas Healy booted a penalty on the final play of the game, giving Victoria’s Glenlyon Norfolk Gryphons a walk-off win over Burnaby’s first-year Byrne Creek Bulldogs.

“We are still on the hunt for that first elusive win of the season at the senior boys level and this is the closest yet this season,” said Bulldogs’ head coach Moreno Stefanon.

The Gryphons, hindered themselves with a 15-man roster which, reduced by the sin bin to 13 by game’s end, got three tries from Chris Graham and another from Noah Ballinger, as well as an additional convert from Healy.

“Chris Graham has been a standout at No. 10 for us this season,” said GNS head coach Frank Stanley. “He leads our team in every way, including tackles and tries scored.”

Byrne Creek got outstanding play and a pair of tries from its own No. 10, Chidubem Nkoloagu. Pongpol Karjanolarn added a try of his own in the loss.

Byrne Creek dominated much of the physical play in the match, especially in the scrum.

“However the experience of a program like GNS still proved to be a tad too much,” said a proud Stefanon.


(no reports submitted by Monday morning deadline)

G.W. Graham 39 Belmont 17, Abbotsford 72 Argyle 5, Robert Bateman 16 Handsworth 13, Yale 22 Kelowna 16, L.V. Rogers 39 Clarence Fulton 7.

(All game reports  from the seven-day period spanning Tuesday through Saturday of each week must be submitted by the team’s head coach to by Monday morning, without exception)





VANCOUVER — Lord Byng got up early with two quick tries from captain Landon Clironomos and halfback, Nate Berrington-Dom.

The Tigers soon wrestled momentum away with strong forward play and eventually closed the gap to 14-5 on a try from Josh Soquila.

Tupper continued to put Byng under pressure, but a back-breaking Tiger turnover that was turned into an 80-metre try from Berrington-Dom just before the halftime whistle sealed the deal.

The Grey Ghosts added 33 unanswered points in the second half.

Clironomos led the scoring with 32 points from four tries and six converts. Berrington-Dom scored a third try while inside-centre Finlay MacDonald converted his own try just before the final whistle.



LANGLEY — A crosstown derby rivalry a good decade into its existence has lately gone in favour of Mountain’s Eagles, and the 2019 battle held staged last Tuesday held form.

The Eagles, who are poised to take a run at the Triple A B.C. title looked like a team ready to play the part. 

Led by the relentless defence of captains Hosua Kim and Gavin Steinthorson as well as four tries from Ethan Bernardin and a pair from David Wegert, Mountain was able to build an early advantage.

With defence much on the Redhawks’ mind, they continued to play off of their back foot,  yet they were able to turn the tide slightly and come out of the first half with a Newton Ma try.

With the second half continuing much the same, Poppy was able to play with the ball and were able to capitalize with scores from Gabe Anderson and Colter Mueller.



NANAIMO — The host Islanders controlled most of play with Grade 10 Dylan Cleaver having a standout game at fly half, both with his boot and his ability to control the proceedings.

NDSS got tries from James Dunn, Patrick Behie, Dylan Cleaver, and Kurt Schnablegger.

Cleaver hit all his converts plus a penalty to finish with 16 points.

NDSS will now host the winner of Cowichan and Vanier for the North Island top Triple-A seed on May 14

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