Westshore wins Battle of the Rock
WESTSHORE 22 VANCOUVER ISLAND 17
Island sporting derbies don’t come more pitched than when the Westshore Rebels play the Vancouver Island Raiders in the B.C. Football Conference.
The latest incarnation of the rivalry, dubbed the Battle of the Rock, occurred Saturday night at Westhills Stadium with the Rebels prevailing 22-17.
The result added to the first leg of this grudge match. That was on Aug. 5 and also went to the Rebels, who edged the Raiders 27-25 at Caledonia Park in Nanaimo.
Second-place Westshore is 6-1 with 12 points, behind the BCFCleading Okanagan Sun (6-0-1), who are on 13 points following Saturday’s 42-3 victory over the Valley Huskers (0-7) in Chilliwack. The Raiders dropped to fourth place at 3-3-1 for seven points. The Langley Rams moved to 4-3 and into third place with eight points after a 27-21 win over the Kamloops Broncos (1-6) on Saturday.
The Rebels visit Langley next Saturday, while the Raiders host the Huskers at Caledonia Park.
On Saturday, the Raiders led 10-3 after the first quarter before Kyle Clarke’s field brought Westshore to within 10-6 in the second quarter. D’Saun Greenaway, a stratosphere-leaping six-foot-five receiver from Mississauga, Ont., gave Westshore a 13-10 lead by hauling in a converted touchdown pass in the third quarter. Greenaway, who has played in U Sports for York University, came into the game leading the Rebels receivers with 22 receptions.
The Raiders led 17-14 after the third quarter before Trey Campbell of the Rebels moved in for a fourth-quarter touchdown to put Westshore ahead for good.
The all-purpose running back came into the game leading the league in rushing and is among a handful of Rebels players tagged for bigger things.
“You’ll see pro [CFL] and collegiate [U Sports] scouts out at our games. We’ve got a good buzz around our team nationally and we’re getting spotted around the country,” said Rebels head coach Charly Cardilicchia.
The Rebels, who haven’t lost at Westhills since October 2015, remain on track for a potential 9-1 regular-season record. That would eclipse the record of the 2016 Westshore team that went 8-1-1 in the regular season en route to winning the Cullen Cup for the BCFC post-season crown before placing second to the Saskatoon Hilltops in the Canadian junior final.