by Andrew Smith, BC Rugby Communications – Photos by Glenn Ivens (ISN)

January 27, 2013, Victoria, BC – Cowichan rugby product Pat Kay produced a dazzling 23-point performance on Saturday afternoon to lift the Vancouver Island Crimson Tide to a 33-13 victory over Vancouver in round one of the McKechnie Cup.

The 19-year-old was a nightmare for the Vancouver defence and proved once again why he is quickly asserting himself as one of Canada’s brightest national team prospects.

Having missed the recent training sessions for the Tide due to school and U20 Canada national team commitments, Kay hit the ground running in today’s senior men’s match going over for a try and converting his score in the ninth minute. Kay would add a penalty before the half to account for all 10 of his team’s points heading into the break.

Pat Kay put in a stunning performance on Saturday, leading his Vancouver Island Crimson Tide squad to a 33-13 victory in the opening leg of the BCRU McKechnie Cup. (photo by Glenn Ivens – ISN)

Vancouver went toe-to-toe with their hosts and through a 24th minute try from fly half Bryan Tyrer and a convert and penalty from Chris Robinson, found themselves level 10-10 at the break.

The second half opened with Kay providing another penalty to see his side up 13-10. Robinson responded and feeling confident with the tee, kicked an amazing 42 metre penalty which bounced off the cross bar through the uprights to draw the game level at 13-13.

The remainder of the second half was one way traffic, however, as the Island Tide unleashed their runners and scored three tries in the span of 20 minutes.

Island Tide’s Doug Fraser looks to cut back inside on Vancouver Wave’s Mathew Cheong during Saturday’s McKechnie Cup tilt at Westhills Stadium in Langford. The Tide took the first leg of the series 33-13. (photo by Glenn Ivens – ISN)

“When it came down to the seventh and eight phase I think our team kept going and maybe they slowed down a bit,” said Kay. “They had some bigger guys but we just didn’t stop.”

Tide Captain Doug Fraser would slice through in the 57th minute before Kay went over in the 71st  for his second try of the day. As the match began to unravel, Kay was clearly enjoying himself when he kicked across field and the ball bounced into the hands of a sprinting Jonny Morris who darted over in the corner for the Tide’s fourth and final try.

Luke McClosky lets it all hang out as he powers past Vancouver Wave defender. The Vancouver Island Tide opened the McKechnie Cup series with a 33-13 victory at Westhills Stadium in Langford on Saturday and now head to the Fraser Valley on Feb.2 for game 2. (photo by Glenn Ivens – ISN)

“We know what Pat Kay brings to the table,” said Tide coach Kenny Goodland. “He really fit in instantly with this team. He couldn’t come to the training sessions because of his under-20 [national team] commitments but his talent really shone through today. You could tell he’s one for the future.”

The Island Tide will now head to Abbotsford for a February 2nd clash with the Fraser Valley Rugby Union reps at CFV Exhibition Park. The Valley are reigning McKechnie Cup champs having lifted the coveted trophy in 2004 when it was last contested for.

“These kids are having fun and we aren’t going to change a whole lot ahead of next week,” added Goodland. “It will be the same game plan looking to move the ball and keep the energy up.”