Oak Bay Barbs flyhalf back from U18 international tour

Flyhalf on track with Rugby Canada U18 program

Rugby Canada U18 flyhalf Max Abercrombie lines up a kick during the U18 tournament in San Diego. Abercrombie was part of the Oak Bay Barbarians 2018 provincial championship and will play flyhalf for the Barbs when the season starts around spring break. (Photo by Lance Abercrombie)

The high school rugby season is still more than two months away but Oak Bay’s Max Abercrombie is already in fine form.

The Grade 12 student was in San Diego last week for a pair of international tests against USA U18 on Dec. 28 and 31. Canada took 50 players, split as Canada White and Canada Red.

It’s been a long journey for the kid who started as a mini with the Castaway Wanderers.

Abercrombie lined up for Canada Red at flyhalf (No. 10) on Dec. 28, kicking two conversions in a 26-19 loss to USA U18 Blue. He then lined up at fullback (No. 15) on Dec. 31, again kicking the conversions in a 33-25 win over USA U18 White. He also played in a 51-14 win over a South African academy team on Jan. 3 as part of the World Youth Rugby Festival in Los Angeles.

It’s the second-straight trip to San Diego with the Canadian U18 team for Abercrombie, who is hoping to feature for Rugby Canada at its U18 invitational at Shawnigan Lake this spring.

Abercrombie’s future looks good, said Sean White, a former Canadian sevens player who is an Oak Bay alma matter. White is now the head coach of James Bay premier men’s rugby team and, with Castaway Wanderers head coach Scott Manning, the two were Canada’s backs U18 mens backs’ coaches in San Diego.

“Max reads the game so well,” White said. “Seeing him in the 15s set-up, there’s a lot going on and he’s able to calculate the decision in 15s and stand out in that regard.”

And while Abercrombie was captain of the Oak Bay High soccer team this fall it’s his rugby resume that’s padded up. As a Grade 10 junior, Abercrombie helped the Oak Bay Barbarians win the senior provincial 15s championship in the spring of 2018. Later that year he helped the Castaway Wanderers win the U18 provincial championship in December.

“The hope is to play at university and for Canada’s U20 team and go from there,” Abercrombie said. “I’d like to study kinesiology at [the University of B.C.] and apply for med school.

The UBC Thunderbirds rugby program has caught up to the University of Victoria Vikes as a top men’s rugby program in the country.

“It’d be ideal if I can develop my skills with UBC, one of the best teams in the country,” he said.

In 2019, the Barbs were unable to advance beyond fourth place in the high school super league as Shawinigan Lake were once again the 15s provincial champions.

It’s still early but Abercrombie is excited for this year’s school season, his last as a Barb, and another shot at a provincial title.

“I’m really looking forward to the [school] season and a new year,” Abercrombie said. “There’s a lot of young talent on the team and looking forward to finishing high school career off on a high.”

A trio of Victoria-based players played for the Rugby Canada U18 women’s program last week. St. Michaels University School student Chloe Hill-Huse, a fellow Castaway Wanderers player, was joined by two UVic Vikes, Regan Casey of Ottawa and Madison Jumeau (a Castaway Wanderers player from Duncan).

reporter@oakbaynews.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Six months to Francophone Games, 600 volunteers needed

Online applications open on Jan. 14

Tech consortium invests $25 million into four University of Victoria research projects

Investments come with goal of developing, implement technologies created by Canadians

Organizers seek input for long-awaited Oaklands community garden

Oswald Park Community Garden Design Workshop coming up on Jan. 19

Improperly transporting a pet in the back of the truck can cost up to $368

Police recommend keeping all animals inside the passenger portion of the vehicle

Mass-timber project in Esquimalt switches from condos to rentals

Corvette Landing will now offer rental units in the area

How to beat Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year

Multiple factors can play a role in seasonal depression, says Fraser Health psychiatrist

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in lingerie store

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

BC Green Party leader visits northern B.C. pipeline protest site

Adam Olsen calls for better relationship between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations

Most Read