James Bay make late drive to win Barnard Cup at UVic

James Bay Athletic Association win the 2013 Barnard Cup 26-23 over the UVic Vikes

Spencer Dalziel pulls one out of the ruck for James Bay as the visitors upended the host UVic Vikes 26-23 for the Barnard Cup Island championship rugby trophy Friday night.

The James Bay Athletic Association proved once again you can’t under value experience.

Captain Spencer Dalziel and fellow veteran Nolan Miles each scored a try and led the Bays to a come-from-behind Barnard Cup victory over the UVic Vikes 26-23 on Friday night.

Visit a photo gallery here.

It’s the Bays’ sixth  Island championship in seven years, all against the Vikes, and this year’s win came in the last three minutes of the game. It’s also the 57th time the Bays have won the Barnard Cup in the trophy’s 102-year history.

“We’ve won over 50 per cent of the (Barnard Cups) so that’s always nice,” Dalziel said. “With the Vikes it’s always an 80-minute game. In our history (against UVic) we’ve been up 10 or 15 points with 10 minutes to go and they’ve found a way to make it a game. You play the whole 80 otherwise you’re in trouble.”

Conditions were close to ideal as the pitch was a bit soft and damp but could have been worse, as in muddy or frozen. The humid Victoria air wasn’t as chilling to the bone as it has been for most Barnard Cups.

The Bays couldn’t find their game in the first 30 minutes, as the Vikes took a 10-0 lead on tries by national team scrum half Jamie MacKenzie and national sevens player Luke McCloskey. Fergus Hall was strong for the Vikes as the fullback kicked a try conversion and two penalty goals.

The Vikes started the second half with McCloskey’s second try to go up 20-10. But the Bays turned it on and mounted a comeback with tries by prop Cole Racine and No. 8 Nolan Miles from the scrum. The Bays finally overtook the lead with three minutes remaining, when fullback Lucien Nels finished a bullish Bays’ effort.

“I feel like we outplayed (James Bay) most of the game we just made some dumb mistakes and let them march down the field with easy penalty kicks,” Vikes’ MacKenzie said. “That was the difference. When it comes to point like that (20-10 lead) in the game we need to learn to close it out.”

As inexperienced as the Vikes might be compared to the Bays, the latter also put forth one of its youngest rosters, likely the youngest of the Bays’ six Barnard Cup winning rosters in the recent era.

The leadership of Dalziel and others helped make the difference with the youngest Bays team in at least a decade, said Bays coach Peter Rushton.

“It’s not like the days of old, men against boys. The Vikes are big, fit guys and we had a relatively inexperienced group out there. Spencer’s guidance and leadership out there is huge. He got injured in the second half and stayed in. He is such a gutsy player. That’s good for others to feed on. Hopefully they learn lessons from it and get a little bit better.”

The Bays and Vikes are tied at 4-2 in CDI Premier Rugby league and will resume play in the new year.

From the scrum: Jamie MacKenzie, a former pro scrum half for Esher of England’s Rugby Championship, started the Barnard Cup wearing No. 22 because the Vikes’ No. 9 didn’t fit him.

sports@vicnews.com

 

Just Posted

Victoria City Council approves inclusionary housing policy

After years of back and forth, the policy will be ratified in two weeks

Filipino Heritage Month event takes over Centennial Square

Dancing, music and food highlight Mabuhay Day celebration in Victoria

West Shore residents report finding anti-SOGI 123 flyers in mailboxes

SD62 trustee Ravi Parmar says the flyers are ‘garbage’

Sidney Museum donates 60,000 Lego bricks to local schools

Sidney, Deep Cove, ḰELSET, Brentwood, Keating and Cordova Bay elementary schools get Lego avalanche

Victoria Weekender: What’s happening this weekend, June 15-16

Car Free YYJ, a barber battle and an Outdoor Discovery Day

Homalco tour gives glimpse into area’s ‘People, Land, Water’

First Nation business mixes cultural components with wildlife excursions

Bombers down B.C. Lions 33-23 in season opener

Former Lion Andrew Harris leads Winnipeg with 148 rushing yards

Northern B.C. family remembers murdered Indigenous woman with memorial walk

Still no closure for Ramona Wilson’s family 25 years later

Monkey spotted on late-night jaunt in Campbell River

Conservation officers also apparently looking for cougar in the area

B.C. university to offer mentorship program for former youth in care

Students using the provincial tuition waiver program will soon be able to form a community at KPU

Cyclists competing in one of the toughest bike races on the planet pass through Fernie

Divide riders looking strong as they finish first leg of 4160 km race

You might not know these B.C. records are public

Hired a lawyer to file a civil claim? Those are published online

B.C. bus driver loses case to get job back after texting while driving full bus

An arbitator ruled that Tim Wesman’s phone usage was a “a reckless disregard for public safety”

Most Read