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Rugby program continues to flourish at SDSS

Senior boys, girls and two junior teams set to start regular seasons
The South Delta Secondary senior boys are getting ready for the regular season during a practice before spring break at the school. Ian Jacques Photo

The rugby program at South Delta Secondary continues to grow as more than 100 student athletes between grades 8 and 12 are training for a regular season that starts next week.

The senior boys, senior girls and two junior boys’ teams will take the pitch this year looking for build on their success from 2023.

Last year, the tier one juniors won the zone banner and went to provincials.

The senior boys also went to provincials. Both teams intend to repeat and even improve their performances as both teams have many returning players.

An extra year of experience and size should benefit both teams said junior coach Sean Waymouth.

He said the tier two juniors are a developmental team this season made up mostly of grade 8 and 9 students with a few 10s rounding out the team.

International students continue to step up and join the program in good numbers as well he said.

On the senior boys’ side, head coach Chris Dodd said 36 players are on the roster and have been practicing since late January.

“Besides the returning players, we have also seen an increase in new players to this great game, which is very exciting for the future of rugby at SDSS,” he said. “Overall, we are very excited and feel we are in a good position to challenge for the South Fraser Valley AAA division championship and look forward to testing ourselves against the best in the province.”

The senior squad finished with a 2-1-1 record at its season kick-off tournament in early March played in a snowstorm – a first for Dodd – an Aussie ex-pat who has never played in snow being involved in the game for 40 years.

“The snow added a uniquely Canadian vibe to the southern hemisphere style of play adopted by the boys’ team – a hard tackling, hard rucking, possession-dominant strategy,” he added.

The senior girls team last year was in the 7s developmental league with eight players. With the success last year, the team now has more than 25 players and has moved into the 15s developmental league. The girls’ teams range from grades 8 to 12.

All four teams have home games next week and would love to see support from the school community and the community as a whole.

On Wednesday, April 3 at the South Park Elementary field, the junior tier one team plays Lord Tweedsmuir at 1:45 p.m., followed by the junior tier two team at 3 p.m. and the girls play Semiahmoo at 4:15 p.m.

Then on Thursday, April 4, the senior boys take on Elgin Park at 4 p.m. at Dennison Park.