CORE Team Teambook
The Crows U19 Make History
Date: November 26, 2012
Saturday November 24th, 2012, was a great day for rugby! For the second year in a row, coaches Steve Doyle and Chuck Bullock got their Kelowna Crows U19 team to the Tier 2 Provincial Final. This year, however, thanks to the team's undefeated season, the Crows won the right to host the Provincial Final match on home turf for the first time in history. The home town crowd that gathered at Kelowna City Park also hoped that the result would be different this year. The Crows narrowly missed their first provincial title last year when they lost to Bayside, and the team was determined to win it all at home.
A resolute Crows squad took to the pitch against their opposition, the United U19 side based out of Coquitlam. The home town boys set a fast tempo in the beginning of the match, and at around the seven minute mark Captain Lyndon Duncan found the United in-goal for a try off of a penalty play from five metres out. Jed Anderson made good on the convert and the Crows were up 7-0. Soon afterwards hooker James Letvinchuck punched in another try off of the back of a ruck from 3 metres out, and Anderson again made the convert to bring the score to 14-0.
The Crows were then dealt a heavy blow, however, when star fullback Amrit Mahal went down with an injury. The Kelowna side seemed to lose a step after the ensuing 10 minutes of injury time that it took to safely escort Mahal off of the field. At the same time the United squad seemed to step up their game, and their hard work paid off with a try shortly before half time. The United kicker fell just short on the convert, and the score was 14-5 for the Crows at the half.
The Crows came out swinging in the second half after being refocused by coaches Doyle and Bullock. They once again set a quick tempo and controlled the majority of the play. The pressure got to United, and a botched kick from their in-goal set up a Crows' five metre scrum. Number 8 Sam Overton picked the ball up off the back of the scrum and dished it to number 9 Joey Wallick for another Kelowna try. Jed Anderson went three for three as he kicked the convert, which brought the score to 21-5 for the Crows. No other points were scored during the remainder of the match, and at the final whistle the Crows U19 became Provincial Champions for the first time in history!
After the match, Barry Ebl presented plaques to United and the Crows on behalf of the British Columbia Rugby Union. Doug Manning then presented the Crows with a Provincial Championship Cup on behalf of the Central Okanagan Rugby Enthusiasts. The win was the perfect end to the Crows' perfect season. From the beginning, coaches Steve Doyle and Chuck Bullock made no secret of the fact that the team's goal for the year was to win the title, but to do it on home turf, and on the back of an undefeated season, surely made the hard fought victory over a tough United side that much sweeter.