All-star team sweeps awards
To be considered among the great Canadian junior football teams of all time, the 2011 V.I. Raiders will have to win it all.
But they definitely put together one of the greatest regular seasons, and were honoured accordingly by the B.C. Football Conference this week with more than a dozen year-end awards.
Quarterback Jordan Yantz was a multiple winner after a season in which he led the conference in touchdown passes, yards, completions, completion percentage and efficiency. He was named the BCFC’s Offensive Player of the Year and Outstanding Offensive Back.
Rookie corner Adam Laurensse, who led the province in interceptions, was chosen Outstanding Defensive Back; Andrew Smith, who led the BCFC in catches and touchdown catches, was named Outstanding Receiver; Ranji Atwall was selected Outstanding Linebacker and Matthew “Snoop” Blokker was the winner of the Ranji Mattu Memorial Coach of the Year award.
All-stars include Yantz, Laurensse, Smith, Atwall, offensive lineman Alec Pennell, tailback Jordan Botel, receiver Dustin Pedersen, defensive lineman Nick Woznesensky and linebacker Dylan Chapdelaine.
Okanagan Sun defensive lineman Steven Doege was chosen Defensive Player of the Year, the Langley Rams’ kick returner Nick Downey is Outstanding Special Teams Player and the Westshore Rebels’ tailback Greg Morris is Rookie of the Year.
Raiders play by rules
The V.I. Raiders were vindicated this week as the B.C. Football Conference dismissed a case of tampering after an investigation by the discipline committee.
In report leaked to the Bulletin, discipline committee chair Bickey Nadasen indicated to BCFC president Frank Naso that the committee was unanimous in its decision because of a lack of any evidence of tampering.
“Not one person who presented statements for the Sun actually physically talked to the player in question, Mitchell Thompson,” wrote Nadasen. “Whatever evidence was presented was largely hearsay and, therefore, inconclusive … In essence, Mitchell Thompson remains a bona fide member of the Vancouver Island Raiders.”