Jacub Gillman, John Barsby Secondary School RB, scores a TD to put his team up by 42-20 vs. the GW Graham Grizzlies in playoff action Saturday at Merle Logan Field. Barsby won 49-20. (KARL YU/News Bulletin)

Barsby Bulldogs bite GW Graham in high school football playoffs

Nanaimo high school senior team wins 49-20, advances to face top-ranked Vernon

The John Barsby Bulldogs varsity football team scored a convincing 49-20 win in their B.C. high school AA football opener, but they face a tough test next vs. the province’s top team.

The Bulldogs, coming off a bye, handily beat the GW Graham Grizzlies by 29 points in their quarter-final matchup, with Zachary Taylor, Jacub Gillman, Cameron Wright and Sean Duquette among those scoring touchdowns. Rob Stevenson, head coach, said it was a great win for the program. He said his team had “more bounce” than the Grizzlies and was particularly happy with special teams, which forced three turnovers for TDs.

“We got three big turnovers on kickoffs,” said Stevenson. “We gave them fits. They couldn’t handle the ball. We kept it on the ground and I think that was a real game changer. We were able to score off of those … the other team, I think, was trying to get the big play to get back into the game so they were throwing a whole lot and when you do that, it gets a little predictable.”

RELATED: Barsby Bulldogs await playoff football

Next up for the Bulldogs, the Vernon Panthers who blew out Parksville’s Ecole Ballenas Secondary Friday 51-14. Barsby is familiar with Vernon, said Stevenson.

“We’ve had a history with them,” said Stevenson. “We’ve beaten them in the playoffs, in big games, in semifinals and they’ve beaten us in big games, so this one’s on. The kids know each other from both programs and in my mind’s eye, it’s probably going to be the best game of the playoffs.”

Stevenson said the game will be on Friday or Saturday at B.C. Place Stadium in Vancouver.



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