October 8, 2022. Langford, BC ( ISN ) – The Westshore Rebels completed the regular season series sweep of the VI Raiders with a 28-9 victory Saturday night at Starlight Stadium to finish the regular season with a 7-3 record.
The all-important win gives the second place Rebels a Cullen Cup semi-final, home-field advantage against the Valley Huskers of Chilliwack next weekend in Langford, BC. The Rebels have split the regular season matchup with the Huskers to share second place position going into the post season, however the Rebels would claim the #2 spot on points for-and-against in their head to head matchup.
Versus the VI Raiders, it’s always hotly contested battle when the two teams hook up, however the Saturday night Westshore win would see the Rebels remain undefeated this season versus their up island, Nanaimo nemesis, winning all three meetings this season.
On paper, most would think that a Rebels win against the Raiders ( 1-8 ) would be a forgone conclusion, however the Raiders had proved difficult for the Rebels ( 6-3 ) to handle in their last contest. As most teams contend with, late season injuries have seen the Rebels struggle on both sides of the ball.
Saturday’s game would prove no different as the Rebels would have to defensively, dig deep to hold the aspiring Raiders off the scoreboard much of the first half. Both sides would struggle to find the scoring touch in the first half despite a few chances found in the end zone that would be turned aside. The Rebels, winning the kicking game with a 4-3 score looked to take that lead into the halftime locker room with seconds remaining, however a Raiders Chomolock pass downfield from their own 42-yard line would find the hands of Rebels DB Devon Young. Young, missing the interception on the prior play, wouldn’t make the mistake a second time. Stepping in front of the Chomolok pass at he the Rebels 45-yard line would run the ball back untouched for the pick-six major and a 11-3 lead, swaying the momentum in Westshore Rebels favour at the half.
The Raiders would march the ball downfield to start the 3rd quarter. QB Chomolock, pressured out to the pocket, would scramble to outrun the Rebels defence, putting his in the red zone at the three yard line. Chomolock would run the QB-keeper to score the first TD for the only TD for the Raiders in the game. A Raiders attempt at the extra point and tie the game would be turn-aside, the Rebels clinging onto a 11-9 lead.
The Rebels would respond after the Raiders score with a TD of their own as QB Jessie would throw the short pass to 2-time 2022 BCFC Allstar, Regina-native Keiran Poissant. Poissant would take the ball at the Rebels 35-yard line, turning on the jets to run 75 yards down the sideline to the house for a 18-9 Rebels lead with eight minutes remaining to deflate the Raider’s momentum.
Rebels QB Te Jessie would add to the lead looking downfield for the big gains with the normally relient running game swallowed up by the Raiders defence most of the night. Jessie, using his cannon of an arm, would throw a deep strike to a streaking Keiran Poissant. Poissant would complete the 65 yard play, running away from the Raiders secondary for his second major in the game, giving the Rebels a 25-9, third quarter lead.
Kicker Simon Hales would add a a 32-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to cap a 28-9 victory.
The Rebels will now advance to the Cullen Cup semifinals against the Valley Huskers Saturday, October 15th. Kick-off to still be determined.
For the VI Raiders, it will be the first time they have not seen the post season in the team’s history since 2014.
Other notable players :
Raiders : Maren Bradbrooke – Receiver, Jason Henderson – Reciever, Running Back
Rebels : Mike Oliva – Receiver, Josh Hoyte – Defense, Praise Ogodun – Defense