The Vancouver Island Raiders football team will have three former Ballenas Secondary School Whalers in their lineup, looking to help lead the team back to the CJFL final.
Former Ballenas Whalers pivot Liam O’Brien was named the starting QB heading into the first week of action in the Canadian Junior Football League.
In a rematch of the 2013 Cullen Cup, the Langley Rams played host to the VI Raiders in the first game of the season and first game played out in the B.C. Football Conference.
O’Brien joins wide receiver Dustin Rodriguez and lineman Terrek Bryant, giving the Raiders a trio of former Whalers in their lineup.
The Raiders found themselves down 13–7 in the first quarter and were playing catch up the rest of the way, coming close to tying the game up but Langley held on for the 44–36 win.
With a new coaching staff in place, the Raiders offence managed to pick up where the team left off last season, with both O’Brien and Rodriguez factoring in.
O’Brien, the former SFU player, threw the ball for 306 yards on the day, completing 24 of 37 passes, including one for a touchdown. O’Brien also had 32 yards running on the day, to go along with one touchdown.
Rodriguez hauled in six passes for 69 yards in the game but was held out of the end zone. O’Brien connected 14 times with Marshall Cook, which ties the BCFC record for most receptions in a game.
The Raiders’ next game, also on the road, comes against the Westshore Rebels this Saturday night.