Towhees qualify for B.C. rugby sevens tourney

VANIER'S MADI GOLD attempts to elude the grasp of Shawnigan's Hannah Darling.
— image credit: PHOTO BY DON BODGER

The Vanier Towhees senior girls rugby team captured second place at the Vancouver Island sevens qualifier at Cowichan Secondary School on the weekend.

The Courtenay squad fell 26-5 to Shawnigan in Sunday's final of the six-team event, and both teams have advanced to the B.C. Rugby Union sevens, to be held April 25-26 at UBC. Cowichan took third.

"Having Hannah Darling in their lineup had a huge impact on their team," said Vanier coach Dwayne Mills of Shawnigan. "Hannah just recently returned from playing for the Rugby Canada National Senior Women's team on the IRB circuit in China, so she is coming from playing rugby at the highest level in the world to playing against our high school kids as young as 15 years old.

"Makes it difficult to compete, but I thought we had a good chance after our close pool game," Mills said. "We have some experienced girls who played at the Las Vegas sevens in January, so our game play was strong, especially in the semifinal game versus Cowichan which we won 19-0, as we have a healthy respect for the stalwart Cowichan program led by Brad Skene.

"Fatigue and the hot weather seemed to play a role in the final as we made a number of mental mistakes that took us out of the game early.  We're still quite happy with a second-place finish and look forward to playing Shawnigan again at the provincial championships at UBC.



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