The Cowichan Piggies survived an early scare to defeat Westshore 34-12 in a Times Cup rugby test at Piggie Park last Saturday.
“The scoreboard wasn’t indicative of how close the game was,” Cowichan head coach Gord McGeachy said. “It was a little bit different of a group than we anticipated. It was Westshore’s second team, so we weren’t expecting them to be as strong as they were. They were actually a pretty decent team. They gave us a scare in the beginning of the game, and we had to grind it out a bit.”
A strong start, with two easy tries by Matt Melgaard in the first eight minutes, got the Piggies thinking they might have an easy day ahead of them. That wasn’t the case, as Westshore came back and held a 12-10 lead midway through the first half.
“We took the foot off the pedal a little bit, and they responded really well and took the lead,” McGeachy said.
The Piggies got the lead back on a try scored and converted by Jenner Teufel, and were up 17-12 at halftime.
Play went back and forth in the first 20 minutes of the second half before Teufel scored again and slotted another conversion. Mike Roberts scored 10 minutes after that, and Andrew Macpherson rounded out the scoring.
In addition to an outstanding outing by Teufel, Mike Rea had a great day at No. 8.
The Piggies are on the road this weekend, visiting Nanaimo for the semifinal of the Times Cup competition, which is expected to be close. The winner will face the victor of the other semifinal between UVic and Port Alberni.
“Nanaimo is on a bit of a roll, as we are,” McGeachy said. “We’re probably the two most in-form teams in the competition right now.
“Our defence is our go-to right now, and that will have to continue this week. We can’t miss any tackles. They’re a hard team to get the ball away from. They play a direct possession style of game, and we’ll have to look after it.”