The V.I. Raiders will play for the B.C. championship.
Nanaimo’s B.C. Football Conference team pulled off the upset in its semifinal Sunday at Kelowna’s Apple Bowl stadium, edging the Okanagan Sun by a score of 15-8.
Quarterback Jake Laberge connected with receiver Brycen Mayoh for both V.I.’s touchdowns, an eight-yard reception in the second quarter and then a 52-yard bomb in the third quarter.
Defensively, safety Shawn Arabsky had a huge game with two interceptions, four tackles and a blocked punt.
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The Sun, trailing 15-1 going into the fourth quarter, had possession for much of the final quarter and Conor Richard scored on a one-yard TD run with about six and a half minutes left. The Sun thought they had a punt return for a touchdown late, but it was called back on a contacting-the-kicker penalty.
Laberge finished 14-for-23 passing for 184 yards, two TDs and no INTs. Mayoh had 109 receiving yards on five catches. North Rainey added four catches.
Raiders kicker James Parker was 0-for-3 on field goal attempts.
In addition to Arabsky’s picks, Nathan Mayers and Travis Novak also had interceptions for the Raiders. Tyler Hill made nine solo tackles, one behind the team record of 10 for a BCFC playoff game. Quinton Bowles made five tackles.
GAME ON … The Raiders will play the Westshore Rebels for the Cullen Cup BCFC championship on Saturday (Oct. 21) at 7 p.m. in Victoria. The Rebels hammered the Langley Rams 57-14 in the conference’s other semifinal this past Saturday.