Short but hardly sweet.
That best describes the 2012 season for the South Delta Sun Devils junior boys rugby team which wrapped up yesterday with an exhibition match against Clayton Heights.
With no Delta league to compete in and lower tier options unavailable due to some programs folding over the current teachers' labour dispute, the Devils had little choice but to enter one of the toughest circuits in the province.
South Delta was part of the tier one Surrey league that features such traditional powerhouses as Earl Marriott and Lord Tweedsmuir. Adding to the challenge was the Sun Devils fielding a team of Grade 9 and 10 players while their opponents were exclusively Grade 10.
It hardly came as a surprise when the locals failed to win a game but they were at competitive in every outing, including one stretch where they played four times in eight days.
"That was the encouraging thing, just the boys' will to compete," said South Delta co-coach Malcolm Johnston. "These teams were not only bigger than us but some had players that are national team candidates. They also have the luxury of having two or three tiers (of teams) at this age group where we are doing are best just to put one on the field.
"Moving forward, the boys have gained a lot of experience
The Devils' roster features a core of players who are involved at the junior club level with Bayside or the Delta Brit Lions. Much of the coaching of the SDSS rugby program, which involves three teams - senior, junior and Grade 8, is done by outside coaching.
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