L-R: Paula Simpson, Aaron L’Arrivee, Kristianna Bouwvers, Stephen Hextall

After a league-wide bye to attend the HSBC Canada Sevens tournament last week, rugby resumed this past Saturday with a double header at Cumberland Village Park.
First up were the Comox Valley Kickers Women facing off against their Island rivals, the Nanaimo Hornets. The Hornets scored first which provided the Kickers with a sense of urgency to answer back right away and helped kickstart a comeback.
Nanaimo’s defense was sound and very fast to advance, which made the Kickers backline use quick hands to try and get the ball out wide. The Kickers forward pack were unrelentless with crashing the ball.  It was a very evenly matched game, with a lot of back and forth action.  Lock Cailey Collins and Winger Kristianna Bouwers both scored twice with Outside Centre Daris Tendler scoring once. Flyhalf Paula Simpson added one try and five conversions. The final score was 40 - 24.
“Our team came in ready as they knew it would be a hard and physical game. Every person on the pitch rose to the occasion, from the forwards who worked hard to produce good balls to the backs who made good use of every opportunity” said Kickers Coach J.P. Lussier.
“There are still things we still need to work on, especially with our next opponent being the Meralomas, who are the defending BCRU Division 1 Champions. Next week will be another hard and physical game.”
Secondly, the Comox Valley Kickers Men hosted Westshore RFC. The opposing team started off fast, putting up four unanswered tries in the first half. With their backs up against the wall, the Kickers came out blazing hot to start off the second half. Inside Centre Stephen Hextall lead the charge by scoring three tries with Flanker Brandon Hudson adding two tries.  Winger Ethan Pellett added three conversions. It was a hard-fought battle, but unfortunately time was against the home squad. The final score was 52-31 for the visiting team.
“Westshore had all the momentum in the first half. I’m proud of how our guys stepped up their game in the second half.  We made our tackles, our lineouts and scrums were strong and our backs ran good lines. It was just a little too late as we were against the clock.” said Kickers Captain Brandon Hudson.
The Comox Valley Kickers Women will kickoff against Vancouver’s Meralomas next Saturday, March 23 at 11:15AM at Cumberland Village Park. The Comox Valley Kickers Men have a bye.
Both the Comox Valley Women’s and Men’s teams are still recruiting players for the season.  No experience needed.  For more information, please visit comoxvalleyrugby.ca or email cvkickers@gmail.com.