And what a tournament it’s been.
We definitely saw the pack separate a bit in the 2nd day of the Vancouver Invitational Wheelchair Rugby Tournament, with both Seattle and Ontario obtaining losses. Seattle has looked like the better club, especially with the heavy minutes being put up by Daisuke Ikezaki (of the Japanese national team) who has been playing with his training club. Ontario managed to defeat them 56-46 in their final match of the day, using a deeper lineup with five Canadian national team members including Mike Whitehead, Patrice Dagenais, and and Travis Murao. With the win, Ontario will face off against Team Japan in the gold medal match at 1 PM.
These two clubs have already met; they faced off in an early afternoon match on Saturday, and Japan took a nine point spread for a commanding win. Japan has been dominant throughout the tournament, and is the only team to go undefeated throughout the tournament. Yukibobu Ike, who has played heavy minutes for Japan, was offered some rest by Team Japan yesterday. Head coach Kevin Orr was quick to relieve his starter, as Japan rolled over Portland 61-45.
Portland will face off against Seattle in the bronze medal match. Seattle narrowly defeated Portland on Friday – this battle of American clubs will be one worth watching. Seattle has only lost once in the tournament; they fell to Team Ontario in their final match yesterday.
Haven’t been out yet? This is the last day to watch some really great teams playing right in Vancouver’s backyard. Come join us! Admission is by donation.
As you can imagine, putting on a tournament of this calibre isn’t easy, and we rely on our awesome sponsors to keep things running smoothly. We’d like to thank Postmark Brewing for keeping the crowds in good spirit and Superstore, Pomme Natural Market, PriceSmart Richmond, Safeway, and Save-On Foods for providing meals to our athletes and volunteers. Thanks guys!