Kelowna Crows take U19 rugby title
A year after coming up just short in their first ever B.C Rugby provincial final, the Kelowna Crows weren't about to be denied a second time.
In the first ever B.C. final on Kelowna turf, the Crows secured the U19 provincial tier 2 title Saturday at City Park with a convincing 21-5 victory over United from Coquitlam.
It capped off an unbeaten campaign for a determined U19 Crows' team which went 6-0 during the regular season.
In the final, the home side set a fast tempo and at seven minutes struck first when
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 after, hooker James Letvinchuck punched in another try off of the back of a ruck from three metres out, and Anderson again made the convert to make 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 to make it 14-5 at the half.
The Crows came out swinging in the second half after being refocused by coaches Steve Doyle and Chuck Bullock.
The pressure got to United, who botched a kick from their in-goal to set up a Crows' five-metre scrum. Sam Overton picked the ball up off the back of the scrum and dished it to Joey Wallick for some insurance and another Kelowna try. Jed Anderson went three-for-three as he kicked the convert to round out the scoring.
After the match, Barry Ebl presented plaques to United and the Crows on behalf of the British Columbia Rugby Union.
Doug Manning then awarded the Crows with the provincial championship Cup on behalf of the Central Okanagan Rugby Enthusiasts.
The victory concluded a perfect, unbeaten season for the Crows whose goal from the start of the campaign was to win the B.C. title.