Rowers shake off some rust, take positives from exhibition matches–

The VRC battles Burnaby Lake in this Ruck-Muck-stylized file photo.
Both 1sts and 2nds dropped their exhibition matches to Burnaby Sept. 7.

An air of optimism surrounded the Rowers as they prepared for first preseason tilt of the 2013-2014 B.C. premiership campaign against Burnaby Lake RFC Sept. 7.

An offseason training regimen saw the familiar, returning players looking fit. And many of the new recruits carried themselves like seasoned rugby players.


The 2nd division started strong, keeping ball in hand for the most part. They put together some solid phases and played convincing rugby during the opening part of the match. Their offensive play reflected some strong pattern and structure, but they lacked the rehearsed, free-flowing aspects the Rowers surely hope will come as they move through the season.
A well-drilled Burnaby team played strong defense and took advantage of turnover ball to put up more points than the Red and White. Final score: 43-20 to Burnaby Lake.


Mistakes near the in-goal area cost the Rowers’ top side more than one try, but overall good play from the forward pack kept the 1sts playing respectable rugby. Winger Sean Hickson stood out, showing that he belonged on the top squad with an impressive chase and tackle near the Rowers’ goal line.
Burnaby Lake made fewer mistakes than the VRC and they did a better job of capitalizing on opportunities created by the Rowers. Final score: 43-13 to Burnaby Lake.
After the game, Coach Sabell noted that while his club still had a long way to go in terms of conditioning and defense, he’s encouraged by the fact that his charges appeared to be mentally and physically capable of playing rugby at the CDI Premiership level.


The premiership season doesn’t begin until Oct. 5., but Sept. 14 will be the last VRC exhibition match until the season begins.

SEPT. 14

11:30 a.m. 3rds vs. Mountain Old Boys, regular season (Brockton)
1:00 p.m. 2nds vs. UBC Old Boys, exhibition (Brockton)
2:45 p.m. 1sts vs. UBC Old Boys, exhibition (Brockton)

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