SUTHERLAND 15 - 14 St. GEORGE’S / YORK HOUSE
Their components running smoothly at full-throttle, Tight returned to the B.C. ultimate championship for the first time in three years.
The co-ed team drawn from athletes at St. George’s and York House won three consecutive titles from 2008 to 2010. And at the 2014 final, played May 26 at UBC, Tight held the lead in the closing minutes before they hit a snag in the name of Sutherland secondary.
Tight led 13-14 but in the closing minutes of the game conceded two points and the championship.
Sutherland, a North Shore team coached by long-time ultimate builder and athlete Carla Keffer, wasn’t a contender before this year but has been an entertaining and promising force for more than a decade.
“Sutherland's emergence comes as no surprise to anyone who has played for years,” said Tight head coach Jon Hayduk. “When I first started 12 years ago, there was a group of kids organized by Carla Keffer that were a crowd favorite for halftime shows during any tournament or championship in Vancouver. Called ‘Vertically Challenged,’ this group of five- to 10-year-olds would run around and play any chance they had.”
This group of kids are now seniors in Grades 11 and 12 who play for the Sutherland Sabres.
“Their lifelong friendship and experience is evident when you see them play,” said Hayduk, who competes in Major League Ultimate with the Vancouver Nighthawks.
The final between Tight and the Sabers was a back-and-forth thriller, with big momentum swings and even bigger plays.
“People tell me it was one of the best finals they've seen at a B.C. championship,” said Hayduk. “It certainly was exciting, and as a coach, very stressful.”
The sea-saw action and more experienced Sutherland put Tight to the test.
“Our team, still a young one, played very, very well. The loss hurt, but I couldn't be more proud,” said Hayduk.
Kitsilano and Price of Wales, the defending 2013 champions, both fell to Sutherland on the Sabers’ ascent to the final. St. George’s / York House eliminated Stratford Hall in the quarterfinal.