Defending champs beat Abbotsford in Premier League opener

Abbotsford's elite men's rugby side fell to the defending champion Oak Bay Castaway Wanderers in their CDI Premier League opener.

Abbotsford’s elite men’s rugby side ran into a buzzsaw on Saturday, dropping a 45-15 decision to the defending champion Oak Bay Castaway Wanderers in their CDI Premier League opener.

Abbotsford led 5-0 in the early going at Exhibition Park, but a series of costly mistakes saw the Castaway Wanderers run in four quick scores for a 33-5 halftime lead.

In the second half, the Abby squad found its footing and held Oak Bay to just 12 points, while recording two tries of their own.

Abbotsford’s tries were recorded by Darwin Guevara, Lucas De Beer and Gareth Bartlett, but the Fraser Valley club was unable to match the heroics produced in a 24-22 win over Burnaby Lake the previous weekend to secure a Premier League berth.

“We started out really well with a lot of possession, but then we made a couple key mistakes with some unforced errors and they capitalized on them,” said Abby head coach Jason Young, whose team’s next Premier League game is Nov. 19 at UVic. “The difference in the first half was the turnover ball and how [CW] were able to score off of that.

“After such a big game last week against Burnaby we had quite a few injuries. It’s always tough a week later to go up against a team like Oak Bay when they have players like Ander Monro, Matt Weingart, Hubert Buydens and Andrew Tiedemann,” Young added. “No excuses though, we played hard. Their experience showed against us but our guys have to play at that level if they want to be here.”

In Div. 1 action, Abbotsford fell 41-3 to Oak Bay, with Jordan Tait-Comis’s penalty kick accounting for the home side’s only points.

– with files from bcrugby.com