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Sports Briefs: Eagles RLFC on top after battle with Bears

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The Sea to Sky Eagles RLFC (Rugby League Football Club) is sitting in first place in the B.C. Rugby league standings after a win over the Richmond Bears on Saturday, leaving the Eagles as the only undefeated team in the league.

For the second week in a row, the Eagles' Ally Mac was the hero. The Bears had the lead 19-18 with about 10 minutes to go when Mac scored to put the Eagles in the lead. The Bears battled back and were set to score when Mac intercepted the ball to give the Eagles final possession.

The last-minute heroics came after the Eagles dominated the Bears in the first part of the game, going up 14-0 early on with tries from Adam Misios, Harvey Bell and Matty Upton, with Upton adding another two point conversion. The Bears scored before the half to make it 14-4.

The Bears took advantage of momentum in the second half and added two quick tries to make the game 14-12 before Bell finished off a try set up by Misios to put the Eagles up again with 18 points. The Bears pulled ahead again with a try and a conversion, until Mac's late try secured the win by a score of 26-19.

"It could have been a disaster, our preparation was awful," said coach Keith Reeves. "The directions to the grounds in Richmond were terrible, at one time we had four cars adrift south of Vancouver somewhere. We forgot the kit, started late, had to get changed at half time — in fact, we did everything wrong we could have done.

"But the disaster was averted, some of our touches were sublime, and two or three of the tries were spectacular. I think class told in the end."

The Eagles RLFC also won their first game 12-10 against the Surrey Bears.

Their next competition is against the Vancouver Dragons on Friday, June 14 at Brockton Oval.

The BCRL is the British Columbia division of the Canadian Rugby League, which also has teams playing in Ontario. The top players from B.C. and Ontario will compete as provincial teams later in the season, and the top players overall could go on to represent Canada.

Rugby league is a variation of rugby that has a few key differences, the most obvious of which is that league rugby action pauses in between tackles, and teams can be tackled six times before the ball is turned over. Turnovers result in changes of possession, keeping the game moving faster. As well, tries are worth four points instead of five, conversions and penalty kicks through the uprights are worth two points and drop kicks through the goal posts during play are worth one point only.

For more, visit http://bcrl.ca.

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