Sun open with ugly win

Jamie Boreham wasn't around for the traditional sideline water dousing after his first win as head coach of the Okanagan Sun.

The first-year head coach had left the park, after being ejected during the fourth quarter of Saturday's pedestrian 26-3 opening night victory over the visiting Kamloops Broncos.

Boreham was handed an automatic ejection after the officials flagged the Sun bench for a second objectionable conduct penalty, although he admits what he said led to the second flag.

"I will protect our players to my very best ability," said Boreham after he was able to return to the field following the final whistle.

"If that means having conversations that maybe are more difficult than others, that's what it is. But, we need to put it to our players, and we also need to make sure our players are playing within the rules."

What he saw before he was asked to leave was enough to know his team has a lot of work to do, and a lot of things to "clean up" before making the trek to the Fraser Valley next weekend.

"Ugly. It was both teams, it was the first game. It is what it is. People trying to figure it out at actual full speed or full speed plus a little bit more," he said.

"Mistakes all over the place on all three sides of the football. We've got a lot to clean up. We're happy with the result...a win's a win."

The Sun came out quick, scoring on their opening two possessions featuring a crisp running attack.

Malcolm Miller ran the ball three times for 41 yards on the opening drive, capped by a 25-yard strike from starter Alex Douglas to Kian Ishani.

Kelton Kouri took over on the second drive, toting the rock three times for 46 yards before Douglas found Jeven Kaechele from 12 yards out.

But, that was it until Lawrenzo Dissee barrelled in from five yards out on the final drive of the game.

The offence had trouble finding consistency for the rest of the game. And, when they did put together a promising drive, penalties, dropped passes or turnovers snuffed them out.

One drive early in the second quarter moved the Sun from their own 23 to the Broncos' one, but a bad exchange to Kouri resulted in a fumble, which the Broncos recovered.

True to his word, Boreham gave his highly touted quarterback recruits an opportunity to run the offence. Douglas started and played the first and third quarters, while southpaw Ethan Newman manned the second and fourth quarters.

Douglas finished the night 8-16 for 108 yards and two touchdowns while Newman was 8-11 for 151 yards. Neither threw an interception.

They ran the ball for 204 yards with Miller getting a little more work, carrying 10 times for 76 yards.

The defence held the Broncos to just a late, penalty-aided, fourth-quarter field goal. The drive, which started on the Kamloops five-yard line, netted only 11 yards in offence and 50 yards in penalties before Landon Munk nailed a 31-yard field goal.

Kamloops managed only 23 yards in total offence in the second half and 131 over the course of the game.

The one bright spot for the young Broncos was the play of rookie running back Kuda Murasiranwa. He carried the ball 15 times for 66 yards and showed the ability to evade tackles once he got into the open field.

The Sun has never lost to the Broncos, winning for the 24th straight time Saturday.

In other games on the opening day of the regular season, the Westshore Rebels came from behind to edge Chilliwack 21-20 while reigning Cullen Cup champion Langley dumped the VI Raiders 42-30.

The Sun hit the road in Chilliwack next weekend while the Broncos host the Langley Rams in their home opener next Saturday at 6.

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