PHOTOS: St. Mikes stifle Oak Bay to reclaim Gareth Rees Boot trophy

St. Michaels University School’s rugby team lifts the 2020 Gareth Rees Boot following the team’s Boot Game win over Oak Bay on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
Grade 12 student Max Nishima, captain of St. Michaels University School’s Senior Boys Rugby team, lifts the Rees Boot following the team’s Boot Game win over Oak Bay on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
Grade 12 student Max Nishima, captain of St. Michaels University School’s Senior Boys Rugby team, lifts the Rees Boot following the team’s Boot Game win over Oak Bay on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
Grade 12 student Chloé Hill-Huse tackles an Oak Bay player during the Robinson Cup game on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
Grade 11 student Emily Salomon Wong grab hold of an Oak Bay player during the Robinson Cup game on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
SMUS Grade 10 student Charlotte Kessler angles away from Oak Bay tacklers during the Robinson Cup on March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
St. Michaels University School Grade 11 student Duke Curran, right, tackles an Oak Bay player during the Boot Game on Thursday, March 12. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)
Grade 12 student Matt Klimchuk pulls away from two Barbarians. (Kyle Slavin/St. Michaels University School)

Led by captain Max Nishima, the Saint Michaels University School Blue Jags ended the Oak Bay Barbarians two-year run as Boot Game winners with a decisive 34-0 victory at UVic’s Centennial Stadium last week.

After two years of Oak Bay coming out on top of the Gareth Rees Boot Game, the Blue Jags swarmed Oak Bay and managed to win without giving up a single point.

Sadly, it looks to be the last rugby game of the season for St. Mikes. The Jags are on the upswing after playing the underdog to the Barbs the past two years. B.C. School Sports followed the provincial recommendation and suspended the rest of the spring sports seasons.

READ MORE: B.C. School Sports suspends spring season

As for the Gareth Rees Boot Game rivalry (Rees, the greatest Canadian rugby player of all time, is a SMUS grad), St. Mikes is now at 12 of the 26 trophies, just one behind Oak Bay’s 13 (there is a tie in there somewhere).

READ ALSO: (2018) Barbs win battle for the Boot in a good evening for local rugby

READ ALSO: (2012) Barbs smash St. Mikes in rugby’s Boot Game

Showing their class for St. Mikes was Luka Djurickovic who scampered along for two tries, with Ben Shaw, John Hernandez-Gillespie and Toby Wu also scoring a try each.

Will Kinahan hit three of the five conversions plus a three-point penalty goal.

Saint Michaels University School also won the annual Robinson Cup match women’s derby 41-15.

To Oak Bay’s credit, St. Mikes led 29-0 at the half, meaning the Barbs clawed back to outscore SMUS 15-11 in the second half.

But it was too late as St. Mikes scored two tries each from Dasha Tosova and Kenzi Farish, and one each from Fernanda Osio, Marabella Rodriguez-Ramirez and Ava O’Connor.

The clever-footed Sofie Tafel kicked three conversions.

Brenda Garcia led Oak Bay with two tries and Marley Robinson scored one as well in their second-half rally that showed tremendous character.

READ ALSO: Athletes turn Centennial track into Saanich speedway

Though all school sports are now sidelined in accordance with the precautionary shutdown of all B.C. School Sports, there is some hope that a few dates could be rescheduled for June. It could include a discussion of a rugby 7s provincial tournament, however, it’s too early to know at this point.

reporter@oakbaynews.com

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