Youth and ferry delays no match for home-town experience – Game report: Burnaby Lake v Castaway-Wanderers, Sept 22nd, 2012
24/09/2012 § Leave a comment
BURNABY LAKE 20
Tries Cejvanovic, Dolesau (2) Conversion Cejvanovic Penalty Cejvanovic
Tries Morris, Seale
A ferry delay and a lack of experience meant the Castaway-Wanderers were up against the wall even before they kicked off against Burnaby Lake on Saturday. To then run up against a well-organized and well-balanced home side only compounded the challenge for the island visitors.
With six Canadian Direct Insurance Premier League debutants in their lineup, the boys from Oak Bay fought gamely but never really stood a chance as they lost out to Burnaby Lake 20-10 at the Sprott Street grounds. It was Burnaby’s first victory over their island opponents in five years.
“To be honest we had some really raw guys in there.” said C-W coach Ian Hyde-Lay. “Burnaby, they’re deep and they’re well-drilled.”
On top of a two-hour delay at Swartz Bay waiting for their ferry, C-W were missing a dozen players through a combination of injuries and players away for clubmates’ weddings.
Burnaby captain Mike Gough knew that striking early would be key.
“We knew these guys were coming off the ferry, we knew the ferry legs would be there so we wanted to keep it quick out of the blocks since they’d been delayed two hours,” he said.
The Blue and White led 8-0 after a rather tight first half. What control Burnaby exerted on the game was entirely because of their ability to control the pace of the game. An early penalty by Burnaby kicker (and number 8) Admir Cejvanovic were the only points on the board until a loose pass in the 23rd minute from C-W centre Nanyak Dala was picked off by Burnaby’s substitute winger Eric Keserich.
Keserich dashed deep into the C-W half before being tackled. A quick recycling of the ball by the Burnaby support followed by some dynamic ball movement across the field sprang Cejvanovic, who rumbled in nearly unopposed for the game’s first try.
Minutes later, Dala nearly made up for his earlier miscue with a deft chip-and-chase to find some open space in midfield. A powerful run and then offload to the supporting Johnny Morris nearly resulted in a try, but fantastic cover defence by Burnaby stopped him short of the line. Moments later Burnaby conceded a penalty on the line, interfering with C-W’s attempts to move the ball quickly, prompted calls for a penalty try by the travelling management. A series of attacks on the Burnaby line ensued, but stout tackling and strong counter-rucking eventually resulted in a holding-on penalty against C-W, ending the threat.
“The first half we showed we were able to play around the fringes,” said Burnaby Lake coach Kris de Scossa. “We knew Castaways with their Canadian players were going to be strong around the fringes.”
The second half opened brightly for Burnaby Lake. A series of forays into the C-W half finally resulted in a 5oth-minute try for Burnaby outside centre Joe Dolesau. Dolesau was a slippery customer all game; his try was well-earned as he burst through a half gap and sprinted nearly fifty metres before dotting down under the posts.
It was a perfect execution of a revised game plan, said Burnaby scrum half Rain de Guzman.
“Kris de Scossa came in and changed the game plan up at half time to use our centres more,” de Guzman explained.”They are really good line breakers.”
De Scossa said it came down to what they’d seen in the first half.
“If we played up against Dala and Fuailefau, we could expose some gaps,” he said. “They are both strong heads-up players that come up off the line very quick but that gives us an opportunity to turn the corner on them.”
C-W’s effort noticeably sagged after Dolesau’s try and although Burnaby continued to press their advantage, they couldn’t turn any attack into points. Cejanovic missed several opportunities to extend the score through penalty kicks, but he couldn’t find the mark.
Play wasn’t completely dominated by Burnaby; C-W made several quick-strike counters, including one foray right to the Burnaby line. Again that was snuffed out and Burnaby took a penalty and again the C-W sideline howled for a penalty try, but they were not get any satisfaction.
C-W’s ultimate undoing was ball-handling. Dala and Fuailefau were both threats with the ball, but the final pass was never there.
The final ten minutes would be a back-and-forth battle. C-W scrum half Mike Dalsin made a break from the back of a ruck; his sideline sprint was only halted by a desperate cross-cover tackle by Burnaby’s Javier Valle. C-W kept the pressure on, however, and eventually worked the ball from sideline to sideline, where a hard-running Gord Kehoe drew a defender to put away fly half Johnny Morris for the try.
Even though Morris’ try pulled the score to within ten points (15-5 for Burnaby) would be too little too late. Dolesau exchanged a beautiful pair of passes with centre partner Jeke Gotegote before dotting down for his second try of the game. Another rapid attack in response by C-W with next to no time left saw Dala carry the ball powerfully to within five metres of the Burnaby line. A streaking Evan Seale ran on to the ball and scored his first CDI premiership try.
It was a tough day at the office for the Oak Bay club, but it was not a total loss, said Hyde-Lay. With a large contingent of youth – five 19-year-olds to be exact – the veteran coach was happy enough with his side’s effort, even if they did lose.
“i thought we merited a bonus point given how hard we worked but that’s how it goes sometimes,” he said.
Morris, C-W’s stand-in fly half for the day, felt that despite the loss, it was a difficult but manageable start to the season.
“Once we have all our players back and in the right spot, we’ll be a team to beat,” he said.
HEAD CLASH: Keserich was returning to rugby after two years away. He replaced Burnaby Lake’s starting full back Sam Lyons, who left the game after being knocked out cold by a head clash with Dala. Lyons was seen walking and talking comfortably post-match, so hopefully the effects won’t be long lasting.
BURNABY LAKE Anthony Luca, Andrew Lackner (Micha Govorchin), Scott Mackay (Ryan Ackerman), Ryan McHollister, Mike Gough (c), Max Hepner, Scott Plummer (Doug Breadon), Admir Cejvanovic, Rain de Guzman, Adam Martin, Steve Batie (Brian Murphy), Jeke Gotegote, Joe Dolesau, Javier Valle, Sam Lyons (Eric Keserich)
CASTAWAY-WANDERERS Clayton Thornber, Karl Renner, Hubert Buydens (c), Steve Grdic, Gord Kehoe, Riley Ilnicki, Sam Powell (Ken Goodland), Dylan Jones, Mike Dalsin, Johnny Morris, Bruce Watson, Nanyak Dala, Mike Fuailefau, K. Reid, Evan Seale