A new entry in the Vancouver Island Soccer League is picking up a legacy that goes back more than 80 years.
Quw’utsun FC is playing its first year in Div. 3B of the VISL, with several players descended from a Cowichan team that won the league’s top prize — the Sir John Jackson Cup — in 1933.
Brad Thorne’s great-grandfather, Richard (Dick) Thorne, was part of the Duncan Native Sons team that won the cup in 1933, and Brad was part of the Cowichan FC team that ended a Cowichan Valley Jackson Cup drought in 2011, going on to win with Cowichan FC two more times after that.
Brad Thorne spent the last VISL season with the masters Cowichan 49ers, two-time winners of their own cup championship, before a new opportunity arose.
“I was approached by [VISL executive director] Vince Greco to see if I knew any guys that would be interested in putting a team into the league,” he explained. “During the summer months I am part of an all-native team that tours all over B.C. to play in mostly all-native tournaments and a few open tournaments as well. I talked to that team, Quw’utsun FC, about the opportunity to join the Vancouver Island Soccer League and the guys were all for it, so the ball pretty much got rolling from there and it sure took off.”
Thorne is the oldest player on Quw’utsun FC, and his 17-year-old son, Quinton, is the youngest, an opportunity that Thorne cherishes.
“[Quinton] could have gone to play for the U21s, but he wanted to be part of this new team,” Brad said. “I kind of think it’s important for him to be there too because he is the future of the team.”
After back-to-back 2-2 ties in Div. 3B play over the previous two weeks, Quw’utsun FC played to a 1-0 loss to Castaways at the Si’em Lelum Field on Sunday afternoon, bringing their record to no wins, two draws and two losses. The team is garnering a sizable following already, something the players definitely appreciate.
“I would like to thank our fans who supported us this far and would like to encourage them to keep coming out to our home games as we work hard towards our first win,” Thorne said.
Quw’utsun FC will visit JDF Blue at Royal Bay Secondary School this coming Sunday. The team’s next home game is set for Oct. 13.