Critical game Friday at Bear Mountain
The Belmont Bulldogs varsity football team has dominated the Vancouver Island and is ready to take on the province.
After a winning last Friday’s game against Edward Milne community school, 27-8, the Bulldogs are on the way to the provincial semi-finals.
Court Boice and Whiz Fletcher helped lead the team to victory. Erik Kenner landed a 35-yard touchdown reception and Keith Williams started the game with a 80-yard kickoff return into the end zone.
“It was a good team win,” said head coach Kevin Harrington. “A lack of discipline almost hurt the us though. We had a lot of bad penalties. We’ll make sure we look after that in the next game.”
This Friday the Bulldogs are gearing up to play against Howe Sound secondary school, with a home field advantage at Bear Mountain Stadium. The game starts at 4:30 p.m.
Harrington is hoping to fill the stands with fans to cheer on the West Shore team. His advice to the fans is to “dress warm.”
If the Bulldogs win against Howe Sound, the squad will get the chance to play for the first place spot in the province.
“We have good balance offensively with running and passing. Defensively we also have a good mix of running and passing,” Harrington said.
Harrington spends a lot of time working with the players on their passing. “A lot of teams primarily spend a lot of time running and they don’t pass as much,” he said. “That’s why we focus on passing, we try to keep them off balance a bit.
“Defensively we are strong enough to win the B.C.’s this year.”
Aside from a full team of 25 varsity players training for the championships, nearly the entire junior varsity team is still on the field, hoping to get some game play on the varsity team during playoffs.
“Twenty-two out of 24 JV’s are still here. Most teams pack it up when the season is over,” said Harrington, noting the dedication and drive of his players. “Some of these guys know they won’t even play in a game but are still here.”
While the varsity team is leading in its Tier 2 league, the junior varsity team faced its first season competing against AAA teams.
Although the JV team finished its season in last place with a record of zero wins and five losses, Harrington said the players fought hard on the field and lost many games with single digit scores.
“Some games we lost by only eight or 12 points,” Harrington said proudly. “A lot of outside people thought we’d get blown away this season. It’s a steep step from AA to AAA but the scores tell we can compete.”
The team struggled with a lot of injuries and a quarterback with a concussion.
“We were missing a couple key pieces to have us compete strong enough in the AAA,” Harrington said.
Next year the varsity team will also be moving up to the AAA league as well. Harrington said the varsity shift will be a bit smoother because next year’s varsity player will have has experience in a AAA league.