Shawnigan athletes are looking forward to warmer weather as spring arrives on Vancouver Island.
With the exception of competitive hockey teams heading to playoffs, winter term sport commitments are now finished, and athletes are moving into their spring choices.
The last team standing amongst Shawnigan's basketball squads, the Grade 9 boys finished their season with a trip to the Provincial Championship.
After a third-place finish at the Vancouver Island tournament, the boys ventured to Burnaby South Secondary as the 20th seed in the 20-team BC Championship.
Coach Jayson Williams says the team was rattled in the early stages of the tournament by the size and quality of the competition. However, the team gained confidence as the tournament wore on. Shawnigan lost the first two games, falling to Pinetree and Seaquam Secondary Schools, before earning an upset win over Brentwood. The victory meant Shawnigan was the only Vancouver Island team with a victory at the event, and led to a 16th place finish overall.
"I'm really proud of how our team came together over a short period, having replaced a few injured players at the last minute," says Coach Williams. "The secret to our success was having a team that was positive and always willing to take on new challenges."
Jack M. earned an honourable mention as a tournament All-star at the Provincial Championship.
The school's Cross Country team has been racing through the snow in the Island Race Series. Run on Sundays every second weekend, the community-wide events have seen some strong results from Shawnigan runners.
Grade 10 athlete Aslan F. has led the team in each race, with times under 33 minutes in the 8k distances and under 40 minutes in the mountainous Cobble Hill 10k.
There are four races remaining in the Island Race Series, giving the athletes extra challenges as they build up speed and endurance in their training sessions.
Last weekend saw six Shawnigan squads open the season under the baking sun at the Las Vegas Sevens.
Two senior boys' teams, two senior girls' teams, and two Grade 8 boys' teams joined 250 other squads for a three-day event spanning 10 fields.
Director of Rugby Tim Murdy reports that all teams represented the school well while playing against slightly older competition. The Boys' Elite U-18 team led the charge, losing in the Bowl final of their division, while the Girls' Elite U-18s reached the semifinals. The group also enjoyed a few cultural outings, including taking in a Vegas Golden Knights NHL game and Cirque du Soleil's O.
Three players – Tom M., Ryan S., and Gerry A., played for their BC Elite U-16 teams in Las Vegas. In addition to their contributions to school teams, a number of students have also been representing British Columbia at the Las Vegas Sevens, the Western Canadian Championship, and the coming Vancouver Sevens. These athletes include Ciaran B., Brenner K., Sammy L., Gracie M., Sydney H., and Chloe S.
While the school's competitive teams are looking forward to the upcoming playoffs in Penticton, the Junior Varsity (Development) team enjoyed the culmination of the season at the annual Ross Cup tournament at Shawnigan and Kerry Park Arena.
Coach David Hyde-Lay says the team was competitive in all matchups, including an outstanding 2-2 draw vs. rival Brentwood. Several players also featured prominently in the skills competition.
Coach Hyde-Lay notes the team iced a full roster for every game, with players ranging from Grades 8-12. While many of the players do have previous competitive hockey experience, the Development squad's primary focus is fun and the enjoyment of the game.
The CSSHL's regular season has now concluded, with all four Shawnigan teams heading to the playoffs in Penticton over Spring Break.
For the second consecutive season, Shawnigan's Midget Varsity team finished atop the Division – this year boasting a perfect 24-0 record – as the group looks to win the division title for the fourth time in five years. The Shawnigan Midget Prep team is also in good shape heading into the playoffs, having finished one point behind first-place Burnaby Winter Club, while the Girls Prep team also remains in contention.
The CSSHL playoffs run on overlapping schedules by division. The full playoff schedule is now posted on the league's website
In advance of the post-season, the CSSHL has also announced award winners in each division. Shawnigan athletes have earned several honours, including:
Rhys D. – Midget Varsity Division MVP
Matthew S. – Midget Varsity Division Top Defenceman
Alex P. – Bantam Prep Division All-Academic Team
JoJo T. – Midget Prep Division All-Academic Team
Nicholas W. – Midget Varsity Division All-Academic Team
More CSSHL Awards will be announced shortly. Stay tuned to this page for updates!