In recent years the B.C. High School AAA Senior Boys Rugby Championship have had one constant: at some point, the Earl Marriott Mariners will square off against the St. George's Saints.
This season is no different as the two rugby powers - ranked fourth and fifth, respectively - will meet in the quarter-final round Wednesday (May 30) in Abbotsford.
It marks the fifth consecutive spring the two schools will meet in a provincial elimination match.
"We have a great relationship with the St. George's coaches so it's a real fun rivalry," said Earl Marriott coach Adam Roberts. "We've played them in the provincials for the last four years and each time we've been within five points of them. There's no favourite in this game, it's just going to come down to who is going to be mentally sharp and willing to work hard for the full 60 minutes."
Earl Marriott captured the Fraser Valley title with a 7-0 win over Abbotsford's Robert Bateman two weeks ago and then had little trouble advancing to the B.C. quarter-finals with a 61-0 win over Cowichan Saturday.
"That was probably the most complete game we've played all season," Roberts said. "Our defence was so strong and our offence was doing what it does best. Every time they got close to our goal line we dug in and pushed them back. It was good to see."
Fullback Ian McMaster was a threat all game, finishing with a pair of tries. Both of McMaster's sprints to the goal line came courtesy of timely passes from flyhalf Quinton Willms. Willms hit the score sheet as well, scoring one try and slotting eight of nine convert attempts.
Roberts also singled out locks Kai Duchnycz and Doug Fairbank for their efforts in the Mariners' engine room up front.