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Central Okanagan XVs Youth Rugby Update

Date: November 29, 2017

Author: Marshall Corbett

Fall Youth XVs Report

The grade 7/8 Kelowna rugby league wrapped up in late October. Six very competitive school-based teams battled for the top spot. At the Jamboree, Dr. Knox middle school went undefeated to earn a berth into the city finals. CNB knocked off reigning champions KLO in a thriller to earn the other berth. Unfortunately the City Final had to be cancelled due to heavy snows.

Some of the top players in the grade 7/8 league united under the Kelowna Crows banner for a tour to the Lower Mainland on the November long weekend. Coached by Marshall Corbett and Kevin Freh, the team practiced once in heavy snow and darkness. The coaches did not know what to expect when the team headed down to the rainy Fraser Valley to take on Bayside Academy and Abbotsford RFC.

The first game was against Bayside U14 and, judging from their warm-up, they were likely to be a quick and well organized team. This was proven when they scored off the opening kickoff with some nice support work and quick ball movement. The U14 Crows then started to shake off the bus legs and began to put pressure on the Bayside attackers. Once the young Crows gained possession, they began to display how physical and hard they could run.  Bayside showed some moments of organized offense but the Crows played great defense and managed to hold out on a long goal line stand before returning to their offensive display.  The final score was 65-5 CROWS. Men of the Match were Michael Jowsey for the forwards and Max Therrien for the backs.

Abbotsford, the team's next opponent, was the top team in the Lower Mainland and hadn't been defeated. The Crows expected a tough game.  Abby opened up the scoring about four minutes into the game with a great team try. The try woke the young Crows up.  The team started to play their game, which meant upping the physicality of the match. Their efforts were quickly rewarded with a few some impressive team tries. As the game progressed, the physicality and tempers rose. Abby received two yellow cards in the second half and Kelowna earned a red and a yellow.  Despite this unfortunate turn, the U14 Crows earned another victory. This time the score was 57-5. Men of the Match were Johannes Galans (forwards) and Jacob Bailey (backs).

Many of the U14 players are participating in the CORD Academy, which offers 20+ hours of off-season rugby skill development to U14 and U16 boys and girls.  

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