Players grow from Pa’Kit rugby tournament

Ian Butters’ happiness goes beyond numbers.

Kaitlin Kennedy of the Pen High Lakers girls rugby squad runs the ball upfield against Strathcona Lords defenders Rebecca Roth (left) and Amanda Rivard (right) during action in the recent Pa’kit Rugby tournament at McNicoll Park.

Kaitlin Kennedy of the Pen High Lakers girls rugby squad runs the ball upfield against Strathcona Lords defenders Rebecca Roth (left) and Amanda Rivard (right) during action in the recent Pa’kit Rugby tournament at McNicoll Park.

Ian Butters’ happiness goes beyond numbers.

The Pen High Lakers girls rugby team coach was happy his team went 2-2 during the 2011 Pa’kit tournament, which this year was a girls-only affair.

“The fact that they were able to play and watch other teams play, they were really able to put together an understanding for themselves of what they were doing,” said Butters.

One of the reasons Pa’kit is organized is to give local teams a chance to see a lot of action.

“It’s a short, intense game the way we structure it,” he said. “We can go away and discuss what they did right away or the next day and get to play again.”

The tournament began on Thursday with teams playing 25-minute halves, which was reduced to 17 minutes on Friday as teams played twice with final games on Saturday morning. What stood out to Butters was that his players showed a willingness to learn.

“I really found with girls is that they are very, very coachable,” he said. “They were learning like crazy.”

The Lakers opened with a 17-0 loss to eventual champions Strathcona Lords from Edmonton, then lost to the North Surrey Spartans 7-5. Things turned around with a 32-0 win over Prince George and 17-5 against the L.V. Rogers Bombers.

Pa’kit’s other purpose is to provide an opportunity for interior teams to get onto the field early and develop.

Lords coach Mark Cannon wanted to get his team playing in a tournament facing other B.C. squads before they get their season started and vying for a city championship. It was important to him because he knows how well-coached teams are. Competing for the first time on grass, Cannon was a little surprised his team won the tournament after they defeated the Kelowna Owls 17-12.

“I wasn’t sure how we’d fare,” said Cannon. “I wanted them to gain experience. I knew there would be good teams there. Penticton is awesome to be in. For my team to progress and to win championships, we must play B.C. teams.”

Cannon was pleased with how Butters organized Pa’kit and felt having the mini games was a positive bonding experience for the players as was the social on Friday night.

“It’s really cool,” he said. “Those things are missing sometimes in sports. The girls were a bit disappointed there were no boys. That makes life easy for coaches.”


Just Posted

The Eyes of the Tigers on the 2021 Beer Rune on June 19. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton Beer Runners take trip around local beaches and brews

Over 160 people signed up to come back after the 2020 run was cancelled

There was high voter turnout for the first of three advance voting days for the Penticton city by-election.
Penticton city by-election general voting day is today, June 19

737 voters on June 9 in comparison to 2018 general election, which had 1,001 on first day

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 Penticton-area men charged with Kamloops brothers’ double homicide

Brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May in Naramata

(File photo)
Penticton not holding Canada Day activities out of respect for Indigenous people

Cities across B.C. are cancelling the holiday after an increased spotlight on Canada’s dark history

Fruit farmers in the Okanagan and Creston valleys are in desperate need of cherry harvesters amid COVID-19 work shortages. (Photo: Unsplash/Abigail Miller)
‘Desperate’ need for workers at Okanagan cherry farms

Fruit farmers are worried they’ll have to abandon crops due to COVID-19 work shortages

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Most Read