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Rugby Ontario – (TORONTO, ON) – Yesterday marked the final day of the 2016 Canadian Rugby Championship, presented by Johnsonville. The Ontario Blues went into their last game against the BC Bears tied for first place with the Prairie Wolf Pack with gold on their mind. The Atlantic Rock sat only one point behind them in the standings – making it a close race with any three of the top teams able to win it all on the final day.

The Prairie Wolf Pack defeated the Rock in an incredibly close 21-20 win earlier in the day at Swilers Rugby Club in St. Johns, N.L.  Although the Blues only needed a win to finish atop the standings, they added a bonus point to finish at the top of the standings one point ahead of the Wolf Pack. They did just that shutting out western Canadian rivals BC Bears 50-21 at Fletcher’s Fields in Markham, ON.

With the match kicking off just after the Magnificent Sevens tournament ended, there was a large crowd out to support the home team as they picked up their fifth MacTier Cup in the past six seasons.

The Blues got onto the scoreboard early with a penalty kick from Andrew Ferguson in the 7th minute. Only 4 minutes later a Blues maul pushed Eric Howard over the try line allowing Ferguson to put another kick through the uprights to let the Bears know that Ontario came to play.

The Bears held strong for the rest of the half and kept the surging Blues at bay making it appear as though we were in for a close game. Ontario went to their room at half and came back with fire lit knowing what was on the line.

Only two minutes into the second half, Ontario lock Mike Sheppard stretched out to score the first try of the half while Ferguson made the conversion. Then in the 50th, 52nd and 59th minutes tries by Mitch Richardson, John Sheridan and Jordan Wilson-Ross increased the Blues lead to 36-0 making it seem as though there was no contest.

Just when the Blues thought they were in the clear, the BC side answered with two tries in two minutes by Josh Clark and Jorden Sandover-Best with two successful conversions by Brock Staller to let Ontario know they weren’t going out without a fight.

Their push was short lived when the Blues answered right back with two tries one minute apart from John Sheridan and Kainoa Lloyd – Mitch Richardson hit both conversions to bring the Blues to the 50 point mark.

The Bears had one final try in the last minute of the match from Gareth Marsden but it was too little too late. The Blues ran out the clock and secured their fifth Canadian Rugby Championship.

“The BC side kept the score close in the first half and definitely made us work” said Blues head coach Chris Silverthorn, following the match. “We knew what was at stake and although they finished at the bottom of the standings we definitely did not underestimate them and came in like any other game, ready to play”

“I’m so proud of all of these guys and all of the work they put in this year,” said captain Hank McQueen. “It feels good to win it all again and we worked well as a team – we also couldn’t have done it without all the staff that made it possible”

Ontario Blues Score Report

Tries: E. Howard (11), M. Sheppard (42), M. Richardson (50), J. Sheridan (52, 73), J. Wilson-Ross (59), K. Lloyd (74)

Conversions: A. Ferguson (11, 42, 52, 59), M. Richardson (73, 74)

Penalties: A. Ferguson (7)

British Columbia Bears Score Report

Tries: J. Clark (63) J. Sandover-Best (65), G. Marsden (79)

Conversions: B. Staller (63, 65, 79)

Ontario Blues Squad – Name (Club)

1. Rob Brouwer (Lindsay)*

2. Eric Howard (Brantford Harlequins)*

3. Tom Dolezel (London St. Georges)*

4.Hank McQueen (Balmy Beach) – captain

5. Mike Sheppard (Brampton Beavers)

6. Marcello Wainwright (Toronto Saracens)

7. Pete Milazzo (Toronto Saracens)

8. Andrew Wilson (Crusaders)*

9. Andrew Ferguson (Crusaders)*

10. Mitch Richardson (Stoney Creek)

11. Kainoa Lloyd (Mississauga Blues)

12. Derek Daypuck (London St. George’s)*

13. Dan West (Crusaders)

14. Dan Moor (Balmy Beach)*

15. Jordan Wilson-Ross (Barrie)*

16. Brendan Black (Markham Irish)

17. Doug Woolridge (Lindsay)*

18. Ryan Surgenor (Bytown Blues)

19. Adrian Wadden (Oakville Crusaders)

20. Myles Dingwall (Bytown Blues)

21. John Sheridan (Markham Irish)

22. Josh Campbell (London St. George’s)

23. Rich Lebel (Waterloo Counties)

*denotes Canadian capped player

Ontario Blues Staff

Chris Silverthorn – Head Coach
Paul Connelly – Assistant Coach
Mark Winokur – Manager
Rodin Lozada – Performance Analyst
Chris Kelly – Athletic Therapist
Dr. Chris Gallimore – Team Doctor

Ontario Blues 2016 Match Schedule:

Alberta Selects 9 v. Ontario Blues 19
Sunday, May 22, 2016*
1 p.m. MDT; 3 p.m. EDT
Ellerslie Park, Edmonton, Alta.

Ontario Blues 12 v. Atlantic Rock 22

Saturday, June 4, 2016

5 p.m. EDT

Sherwood Forest Park, Burlington, Ont.

Ontario Blues 0 v. England Counties 73
Saturday, June 11, 2016*
3:30 p.m. EDT
Fletcher’s Fields, Markham, Ont.

Atlantic Rock 13 v. Ontario Blues 24
Saturday, July 2, 2016
3 p.m. NDT; 1:30 p.m. EDT
Swilers RFC, St. John’s, N.L.

Ontario Blues 18 v. Prairie Wolf Pack 0
Thursday, July 21, 2016
6:30 p.m. EDT
Fletcher’s Fields, Markham, Ont.

Ontario Blues 50 v. British Columbia Bears 21
Sunday, July 24, 2016
3:30 p.m. EDT
Fletcher’s Fields, Markham, Ont.

* indicates non-CRC match

About Rugby Ontario:

Rugby Ontario is the provincial sports governing body responsible for the organization of rugby in Ontario. Our mission is to promote, govern, and develop rugby at all levels in a safe, affordable and enjoyable environment within the province of Ontario.

There are more than 10,000 Rugby Ontario members registered with 63 rugby clubs and four branch unions located across the province, with participation in age grades ranging from minor (age 6+) to masters (age 35+) in male and female divisions.

For more information, visit

About Ontario Blues:

The Ontario Blues program is the high performance representative program for male rugby players in Ontario. It is designed to develop and showcase male athletes for Canadian national teams.

The senior team represents Ontario in the annual Canadian Rugby Championship, and has earned four national titles, having won the competition’s MacTier Cup annually from 2011-2014.

The under-19 team represents Ontario at the annual under-19 men’s Canadian Rugby Championship, and is designed to develop and showcase male athletes for the under-20 national team, as well as serving as a feeder program for the Ontario Blues senior team.


For more information, please contact: 

Eric Forrest
Communications Assistant
Rugby Ontario
(647) 560-4790 x106

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