The Bayside Sharks are in must-win mode this month if they hope to secure one of the final spots in the B.C. Rugby Union’s premier men’s league this spring, but they’re off to a good start.
In the first game of the qualification round – in which one team will earn the final premier berth – the Sharks’ elite men’s team whipped the Vancouver Rowing Club 78-21.
They travel to Victoria this weekend to play the Velox Valhallians, who are coming off a 44-6 loss to Burnaby Lake last week.
“As long as we can go in and get this win, it’s shaping up to be us against Burnaby Lake for the last spot, and one of us will get it and one of us will go home,” Bayside coach Pat Kearney said.
“We’ve still got a chance at the premier league… this is must-win (territory). It’s as good as it gets.”
Against Rowing Club Saturday, Bayside was led by Peter Johnston, who had three ties, while Spencer Thorpe and Bruce Roque each had two. Single tries went to Cody Rockson, Jesse Train, Conor Dickie, Keaton Styles and Garett Gray, while BCRU leading scorer Peter Clifford had seven conversions.
“We’ve really got our confidence back now, and we’re 20 or 22 guys deep. We’re a premier-calibre team, no matter what happens the rest of the way,” Kearney said.
“These games have all been pretty huge – this is the biggest month for our club in a long, long time, and personally, I love the challenge.”