Sun name new head coach

The Okanagan Sun have named a new head coach after their coach from the last three seasons called it quits in November.

On Thursday, the Sun announced Jamie Boreham, the team's former assistant coach, will take the reins next season.

As a player, Boreham was a kicker with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and the Toronto Argonauts, winning the Grey Cup with the Riders in 2007.

He's been former coach Ben Macauley's assistant coach for the last two seasons.

“Our players can expect something different,” Boreham said in a press release. “I will do my very best to give each of them a better experience than all the great ones given to me.”

Boreham is currently the athletic director at Vancouver's Notre Dame Regional Secondary School and the coach of the U-16 B.C. provincial football team. 

The Sun won the BC Football Conference season last year, but lost handily in the playoff final to the Langley Rams.

Next season will kick off in August 2019.


Nagy back at Sun helm

The most successful coach in Okanagan Sun history is rejoining the BCFC football club.

Lawrence Nagy, who led the team to its only two national titles in 1988 and 2000, will take over as general manager. He was installed Tuesday, replacing Jay Christensen, who stepped away from the club after many years with the team.

“I am extremely excited to be handing over the general manager duties to Lawrence Nagy," said Christensen. "He not only has the commitment it takes to be successful, but also understands the culture we have that makes this the premier destination for Canadian Junior Football players. For myself, I look forward to taking on some special projects that will see a resurgence of fan excitement at the Apple Bowl.”

Along with his two national championships, Nagy also coached the team to five B.C. titles. He was inducted into the Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame as a builder in 2011.

Nagy says he has some big shoes to fill.

"As the general manager of the Okanagan Sun football team, I look forward to carrying on where Jay has left off," said Nagy.

"We will need to find a new head coach as soon as possible. This process is in place and looks very promising. In the interim, we’ll need to make sure that the whole Okanagan Sun family is secure and informed."

Nagy says the goal remains the same for the franchise – the quest for a Canadian championship.

"I am totally dedicated to this goal," he said.

Richard an all-Canadian

For the second straight year, Okanagan Sun linebacker Conor Richard has been named a Canadian Junior Football League all-Canadian.

The CJFL announced the defensive all-Canadian squad Wednesday morning, ahead of the national championship game Saturday in Saskatoon between the four-time defending champion Hilltops and the BCFC champion Langley Rams.

Richard finished the season, including playoffs with 33 tackles and eight assisted tackles. He added six sacks, two fumble recoveries, including one for a touchdown, and blocked six kicks.

He also returned 15 kickoffs for 354 yards and a touchdown.

Over the span of three seasons with the Sun, Richard has 85 tackles, 10 sacks, three fumble recoveries, four interceptions and 10 blocked kicks.

The Hilltops and OFC champion Hamilton Hurricanes led the way with three selections each. The Rams had two.

The offensive all-Canadian team will be announced Thursday.

The major award winners including offensive and defensive players of the year, rookie of the year and coach of the year will be unveiled at Friday's Banquet of Champions.


Sun coach calls it quits

The head coach of the Okanagan Sun football team has resigned, after running the program for the last three seasons.

Ben Macauley's resignation comes shortly after the Sun lost to the Langley Rams at home in the BCFC final.

“While my time as head coach has come to an end I will forever be thankful for the opportunity that the Okanagan Sun organization has given me,” Macauley said in a statement. “I want to thank my incredible coaching staff for sticking by me loyally for these last three years.”

Macauley thanked the program for “taking a chance” on a relatively young coach. Macauley was 30 years old when he was hired in 2016.

“While we didn't achieve the ultimate goal of a championship, it will be the many small, and mostly unseen successes that I remember most,” he said. “I have no doubt that the core group of the team will go on to achieve greatness on and off the field in this great community and beyond.”

Macauley says he will be shifting his focus from “the Sun family to my family at home.”

The Sun will begin searching for a new coach immediately.

Sun implode in BCFC final

"We pulled down their pants, we put them over our knee and we gave them a spanking. They got what they deserved."

Those were the comments of Langley head coach Howie Zaron after his Rams embarrassed the Okanagan Sun 39-7 in the BC Football Conference championship game Sunday at the Apple Bowl.

The comments were in response to Sun coach Ben Macauley's statement that the Rams were not a playoff team after beating the Sun earlier in the season at the Apple Bowl.

At they time, they were not.

"We don't need extra motivation, but when somebody from another team insults you or disrespects you, and say you guys are basically nothing, you're not a playoff team...there's six teams in this league, we're not in the top four," added Zaron.

"That's pretty reckless. You need to be careful when you say something like that because down the street, you're going to run into us...and sure enough, here we are."

At the same time, the Rams backed up Zaron's assertion earlier in the season his defence is the best in the country.

They forced four turnovers, and took advantage of five bad snaps when the Sun were in punt formation which gave the Rams excellent field position.

Langley scored 26 points off those nine turnovers, including four first half field goals off the four bad first half snaps.

"I think some of the big game stuff got to some of the young guys. We were on our third-string long snapper," said Sun head coach Ben Macauley.

"You can prepare a guy all you want, and if he's stressed out in a big game and makes an error like that, there's not much you can do to change that."

Macauley said the loss stung a little more because it was in a championship game and, "we didn't put up much of a fight for most of it."

The Sun offence, led by its running game, was almost non-existent.

The running game amassed just 54 yards through the first three quarters, 30 of that on one Malcolm Miller run on the club's second possession of the game.

Matthew Mahler was under pressure all game long and, when he wasn't, he was either just missing his target, or the ball was dropped.

Mahler threw for just 46 yards over the first three quarters and 98 for the game, including three fourth quarter interceptions - all to defensive back Nathan Murray.

The Rams were happy to play the field position game, run the ball, and pick up points any way they could.

Jaden Sheilan booted six first half field goals and quarterback Duncan Little plunged forward for a one yard score as the Rams built what was an insurmountable 26-0 lead at the half.

They scored a pair of fourth quarter touchdowns before Mahler hit rookie Peyton Price with a 26 yard strike to avoid the shutout.

Running back Joseph Carter was a workhorse for the Rams. He carried the ball 23 times for 63 yards as the Rams were successful in controlling the ball, and running down the clock.

Little only threw the ball 20 times, but completed 12 of those for 227 yards. Four of those covered 161 yards, putting the Rams in position to put points on the board deep inside Sun territory.

The Rams will now host the Ontario Conference champion Hamilton Hurricanes in the national semi-final next Saturday.

The winner of that game will travel to Saskatoon for the Canadian Bowl Nov. 17. The Hilltops won the Prairie Conference title Sunday.

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