T-Birds stumble against Alberni

Cowichan Secondary School’s senior boys rugby team suffered a pair of defeats to North Island rivals over the past week, including a game that head coach Ron Glass felt was in the running for the team’s worst in a decade.

The Thunderbirds lost 50-7 to Alberni District Secondary last Thursday (April 17), then fell 21-7 to G.P. Vanier on Tuesday.

The weather didn’t help Cowichan against Alberni, but that wasn’t the only problem.

"In torrential downpour conditions, Cowichan could not do anything right," Glass said. "The TBirds could not keep possession of the ball and it showed on the score sheet. This was perhaps the worst team performance in the last 10 years of TBird rugby."

Amish Dobson had Cowichan’s lone try, with Kyle Joe kicking the conversion.

The T-Birds played a much better game on Tuesday, even if they were unable to come away with a victory. Brock Gowanlock scored for Cowichan, with another conversion by Joe.

Glass called it "a greatly improved effort in which Cowichan showed tremendous improvement in individual and team defence."

Cow High’s development team did manage to beat their opponents from Vanier on Tuesday, winning 15-10. Joe, Justin Young and Nathan Yu recorded tries.

"Continuing on with the first match, Cowichan continued to defend very well," Glass said. "As the T-Birds gained confidence, gaps appeared in the Vanier defence and the T-Birds were able to capitalize on this."

The T-Birds hosted Frances Kelsey on Thursday, and will play an exhibition against Calgary’s Crescent Heights High School at noon on Friday. This weekend, the team will head to UBC for the provincial sevens championship.