Valley products lead Team BC to historic Vegas Sevens jackpot

Four Cowichan Valley rugby players and one coach helped Team BC to an historic win in the prestigious Las Vegas Sevens tournament last weekend.

Cowichan Secondary’s Adrienne Saari and Hannah Morten, Brentwood College’s Ciel Arbour-Boehme, and Shawnigan Lake School graduate Nicole Crowley were all key contributors as Team BC topped the High School Girls division at the Vegas Sevens, the first major tournament win for B.C.’s women’s sevens program.

Team BC won the final 32-10 over Atlantis, a regional team from the Eastern U.S., and the only team to defeat BC in pool play.

"The fact that two teams from the same pool made the final shows the strength of our pool," said Brad Skene, head coach of Team BC and Cow High.

After going 2-1 in pool play, BC defeated the Minnesota Tundra in the quarterfinals and the Serevi Selects from Seattle in the semis.

Skene was pleased with the play of all four local players.

"Adrienne was an outstanding leader and player," he said. "She is most familiar with the game plan so her voice, vision and knowledge were key. Hannah was a closer. Being the spark plug that she is, she came later into the game and used her energy to take advantage of tired opponents.

"Ciel had the best performances I have seen from her. I challenged her in a number of aspects of her game play and she showed a lot of character to adjust her game for the group. Nicole was not initially selected due to an injury which slowed her down at the trials but once in our lineup, she put in a number of MVP performances."

The BC Banshees, a travelling team that won the bowl final in the same division, included Shawnigan’s Madison Brattan,

Brentwood’s McKenna Haz and Brooklyn Navarrete, and Ladysmith’s McKenzie Saysell. In the High School Boys Division, BC Gold reached the final, taking second place behind the USA High School All Americans. Shawnigan’s George Barton scored four tries for BC Gold over the course of the tournament. BC Blue won the plate final, getting four tries from Shawnigan’s Wesley Wong over the tournament and one from Marshall Fremlin.

Also competing for Team BC in Vegas were Tyler Beselt and Michael Henderson of Shawnigan and Aaron Hersant of Brentwood.