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North Surrey Bears look to repeat as B.C. Midget football champs vs. team topped for VMFL title

‘Here we are again, same two teams,’ says longtime coach Bernie Marquardt
North Surrey Bears with their Vancouver Mainland Football League championship banner at McLeod Athletic Park in Langley on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. (Photo:

North Surrey Bears play a familiar opponent for the provincial minor football title this Sunday afternoon (Dec. 4).

The 9-man Midget division squad will battle Comox Valley Raiders, the same team they outscored Sunday (Nov. 27) for the Vancouver Mainland Football League title, 34-24.

The Bears look to repeat as B.C. champs after beating the Raiders last season in an undefeated run to the title, in the division for players aged 16 to 18.

“Here we are again, same two teams,” said head coach Bernie Marquardt.

Sunday’s game kicks off at 3 p.m. at Langley’s McLeod Athletic Park, where last Sunday’s VMFL championship game was also played.

“We’ve won the (league) championship four years in a row, all in Midget, and there’s been a complete turnover of personnel,” Marquardt noted. “We’ve done it with four different quarterbacks, too.”

This year’s QB is Jordan Williams.

“I’ve coached football for 45 years, and I’ll tell you right now, he’s the best leader I’ve ever had at quarterback,” said Marquardt, who began coaching in 1978 as a 16-year-old head coach of 13-and-unders.

In the VMFL title game, the Bears’ game MVP was Jalen York, a slotback/safety who also returns kicks.

“He scored a 109-yard catch-and-run touchdown, from our one-yard line,” Marquardt raved. “You can’t get any longer than that. That was our second touchdown, in the second quarter. That was certainly a statement play.”

The offense scored all five of the team’s touchdowns, with one missed convert, he noted.

The Bears are the only North Surrey team to win a VMFL championship this season.

• RELATED STORY: North Surrey football games moved south during stadium construction.

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Tom Zillich

About the Author: Tom Zillich

I cover entertainment, sports and news stories for the Surrey Now-Leader, where I've worked for more than half of my 30-plus years in the newspaper business.
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