The first-ever playoff victory for the Robert Bateman Timberwolves varsity squad highlighted an impressive weekend for local teams in AA high school football post-season action at BC Place Stadium.
The T-Wolves crushed the Kalamalka Lakers of Vernon 48-0 on Friday, as running backs Ben Cummings and John Beckerleg ran wild. Cummings ran for three touchdowns, and Beckerleg scored a pair of majors, including a 60-yard punt return.
It’s been a while since the two Bateman speedsters have both been fully healthy at the same time, but they were in fine form on Friday.
“The beauty of having those two guys, it just cranks our team speed so far up there,” said Bateman program coach Rick MacDonald, whose team is in just its second season of full-fledged senior AA football. “It’s hard to deal with for defences. Once they get in space, they’re tough to bring down.”
Austen Zacher also ran for a TD, while QB Tanner Friesen threw a scoring pass to Daniel Mills to round out the Bateman scoring. Linebacker Kole Lochbaum led the defence with eight tackles.
Second-round playoff action goes at UBC this week, and the T-Wolves move on to face Ballenas of Parksville at 3 p.m. on Friday.
DOUCETTE CARRIES ‘CANES
Rick Hansen Hurricanes running back Reagan Doucette has been banged up in recent weeks, so head coach Paul Gill elected to use him sparingly in the team’s playoff opener against College Heights of Prince George.
Doucette made the most of his eight carries, though, rumbling for 190 yards and four TDs in Hansen’s 54-13 victory.
“We didn’t want to overuse him – we just wanted to see where he was at,” Gill noted. “Obviously he’s 100 per cent, with the way he performed out there.
“We ran the ball pretty effectively, and our offensive line played just phenomenal.”
Jasnoor Dhaliwal (pictured right) also ran for two TDs and Brandon Ho rushed for another, while Lucas Schwab paced the defence with nine tackles.
The Hurricanes face a stiff test in the second round, as they face the No. 1-ranked South Delta Sun Devils (Friday, 5:30 p.m., UBC).
“We need to have our best game of the year defensively – they like to throw the ball,” Gill said. “But we’re playing outside, and that could be in our favour.”
HAWKS TO FACE HIGHLANDERS
The W.J. Mouat Hawks, the top-ranked AAA team in B.C., had an opening-round bye. They’ll play West Vancouver in the quarter-finals at 8 p.m. Friday at UBC. The Highlanders are coming off a 31-11 win over Rutland in the first round.
Mouat played West Van on the road on Sept. 28, winning 47-33, and Hawks coach Denis Kelly came away impressed with Highlanders QB Johnny Franklin.
“They gave us a lot of trouble,” Kelly said. “We were able to run the ball very well that game, but it seemed like every time we scored, they responded.
“Our defence is going to have to contain Franklin, because he can really run the ball.”