VICTORIA, B.C. – After a two-month hiatus from B.C. Rugby Union action the University of Victoria Vikes men’s rugby team will take to Wallace Field this Saturday, Feb. 23, to face the visiting Bayside AA.
Heading into the second half of the season the Vikes are sitting in fourth place with 16 points and a record of 3-4-0. Led by head coach Pat Kearny, former Vikes captain, Bayside AA has had a challenging season and although second from the bottom with nine points and a record of 2-5-0, the visitors are not to be taken lightly. The last match up between these two sides saw the Vikes give up an early lead and finish with a 24-22 loss at the hands of the hosting Bayside squad.
Most recently, the Vikes have been working towards the University Sevens tournament hosted by Rugby Canada at Langford’s Centre of Excellence, Mar. 1-2. Travelling down to Las Vegas to take part in the Las Vegas Invitational, a sevens tournament that operates in tandem with the international HSBC Sevens World Series circuit, the Vikes took on several varsity competitors from across North America and with a perfect record earned the Cup title.
Making the switch to the traditional fifteens style of rugby union, the Vikes will certainly boast a speedy roster of backs. Winger Beau Parker (Victoria, BC) was a standout at the Las Vegas tournament and will continue to create havoc for Bayside with his pace and skill.
The pairing of scrumhalf Jamie MacKenzie (Oakville, ON) and Patrick Kay (Duncan, B.C.) at flyhalf has proved to be a winning combination and the Vikes will rely on the dynamic play of this duo to generate a number of offensive opportunities.
On the front line, flankers Liam Murray (North Vancouver, BC) and Drew Langer (North Vancouver, BC) are shaping up to provide a significant impact while Zack Myers(Vancouver, BC) was given the nod for Saturday as the Vikes’ starting tight-head prop, indicating some of the depth of the Vikes’ squad.
“This is a critical game for us,” said Vikes head coach Doug Tate. ”We need the win to stay on track and except for our sevens guys like Nate [Hirayama], Sean [Duke], and Phil [Mack] we pretty much have the team that we want so we need to come out on top.”
The Vikes kick off against Bayside AA at 2:45 p.m., Feb. 23, at Wallace Field.
Vikes Line Up
1 - Dan Hyrck
2 - Casey Reed
3 - Zack Myers
4 – Liam Chisholm
5 – Shea Wakefield
6 – Drew Langer
7 – Liam Murray
8 – Robbie Anderson
9 – Jamie MacKenzie
10 – Patrick Kay
11 – Aaron Johnstone
12 – Remi Anctil
13 – Dustin Dobravsky
14 – Beau Parker
15 – Kane Wyatt