Spectrum Thunder receiver Sahjun Sehmi jukes as he advances against the Eric Hamber Griffins in the Tier 2 Subway Bowl provincial championship at B.C. Place on Nov. 25, 2017. Sehmi played in two provincial finals during his high school football career. Photo by Chris Wilson

Spectrum Thunder receiver Sahjun Sehmi jukes as he advances against the Eric Hamber Griffins in the Tier 2 Subway Bowl provincial championship at B.C. Place on Nov. 25, 2017. Sehmi played in two provincial finals during his high school football career. Photo by Chris Wilson

Football player finds fresh start with Spectrum

Defensive back Sahjun Sehmi helps Spectrum to first Subway Bowl appearance

It’s been a long year for Spectrum Thunder football player Sahjun Sehmi.

The Grade 12 student showed up to Spectrum Community School a week into school on a transfer from Mount Douglas secondary, where he was the target of a football team hazing incident.

In search of a fresh start, he left Mount Doug, where he’d played football since Grade 9 and found a home at Spectrum. His only regret, coming so close to finishing his high school football career with a provincial championship.

Sehmi blamed himself for a couple of key defensive miscues that were part of the Thunder’s 28-21 loss in the Subway Bowl Tier 2 championship on Saturday.

“It’s funny, I had an interception, I caught a pass for a 40-yard gain, and I recovered the onside kick, but I also didn’t play well either, I got burned a couple times,” Sehmi said.

The Tier 2 Subway Bowl was Sehmi’s third time playing at B.C. Place, all of them losses. With Mount Doug Sehmi played in the Subway Bowl junior final but lost to New Westminster Hyacks. In Grade 11 he was with the AAA Rams when they lost in the quarterfinals to Terry Fox.

“B.C. Place and I don’t get along too well,” Sehmi said.

At 6-feet-tall, 165 pounds, Sehmi uses speed and agility to make plays as a defensive back, which is his stronger area. Offensively he lined up at wide receiver this year.

Coming from Mount Doug, where things went sour in the spring, there were no guarantees he could transfer and play this season. In seeking a fresh start, Sehmi considered community football until he was permitted to play for Spectrum.

But it almost didn’t happen.

Through an appeal involving extenuating circumstances, Sehmi was able to earn the blessing of B.C. School Sports and his former team, Mount Douglas, to play for Spectrum this season. Without the approval of the appeal board, Sehmi would have would have had to wait a year to play, effectively ending his high school football career.

“I love Spectrum, it’s been great here,” Sehmi said. “Of course I had apprehensions at first. It was like, ‘Okay, I’m new here, I’m trying to get my footing,’ and I mostly came for football but I did actually know a few people.’”

He found the football players were welcoming and accepting, happy to have him join the team in its fifth season. Based on his big-program experience, and the Thunder’s inexperience, Sehmi was appointed as one of the captains.

Academically Sehmi is on track to graduate with a goal of studying at university. He doesn’t have anything lined up athletically at university but will give it another go at the Dec. 9 Alberta vs. B.C. Border Bowl match in Chilliwack. There are two ABC matches a year and the games feature a number of Canadian university scouts looking to fill those final spots. Twenty-three players from the 2016 and 2015 B.C. rosters are now playing U Sports football.

Sehmi was named the most outstanding defensive player at the ABC Border Bowl in May, held in Lethbridge, Alta. He’s joined by Spectrum’s star receiver and defensive back Riley Wilson.

“I just played really well that game, made big plays, and after scouts talked to me and the team invited me back,” Sehmi said.

Football isn’t the end of athletic season for Sehmi, who will lace up the high-tops for the coming high school basketball season.

reporter@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria-Swan Lake MLA Rob Fleming moves to the role of transportation minister in the NDP’s new cabinet. (B.C. government file photo)
Vancouver Island MLAs claim key roles in new cabinet

Key ministries headed by veteran and rookie Island MLAs in Horgan’s new team

Ladysmith’s 1st Avenue will be lit up until January 15. (Cole Schisler photo)
Ladysmith’s 1st Avenue all aglow

Although the tradition Light Up this year was cancelled, folks can still enjoy the holiday lights

Christmas will look a bit different in Cumberland this year, not only because of COVID restrictions but due to changes from BC Hydro about hanging decorations on the poles. Record file photo
Snowflakes left out in the cold for Island town

Holiday season tradition a no-go for Cumberland’s power poles

Karl Ablack, chair of the Port Renfrew Recovery Task Force, says visitors should steer clear of the community after the second wave of COVID has begun to hit across the province. (Black Press Media file photo)
Port Renfrew, Pacheedaht First Nation asks visitors to steer clear of community again

Tight-knit community of 400 has yet to report single case of COVID

The old home at 785 Island Rd. is coming down as the developer was unable to find a feasible business case to save it. (Black Press Media File Photo)
With no takers to move old Oak Bay home, teardown begins

‘We tried a last hurrah,’ developer says

Penny Hart is emotional outside the Saanich Police Department as she pleads for helpt to find her son Sean Hart last seen Nov. 6 at a health institution in Saanich. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
VIDEO: Mother of missing Saanich man begs public to help find her son

Sean Hart last seen leaving Saanich mental health facility Nov. 6

Police in Nanaimo are looking for a suspect who wore a black-and-white striped hoodie and rode a yellow mountain bike when he allegedly stole three children’s backpacks from a daycare facility. (Photo submitted)
VIDEO: Thief steals children’s backpacks from Nanaimo daycare

Suspect rode a yellow mountain bike and made off with backpacks hanging on fence

The Klahoose First Nation village on Cortes Island is under lockdown until further notice due to a positive COVID-19 test. Photo courtesy Kevin Peacey.
Cortes Island First Nation community locked down due to positive COVID-19 test

Klahoose First Nation has had one positive test, one other potential case

North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney has spoken out about some veterans losing their Dimished Earning Capacity income. (Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror photo)
Blaney pens letter to minister about veteran supports

Concerned about veterans losing some income

The baby boy born to Gillian and Dave McIntosh of Abbotsford was released from hospital on Wednesday (Nov. 25) while Gillian continues to fight for her life after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
B.C. mom with COVID-19 still fighting for life while newborn baby now at home

Son was delivered Nov. 10 while Gillian McIntosh was in an induced coma

No face-offs until at least Dec. 8 after the BCHL shuts down pre-sesason play. (Citizen file)
BCHL cancels remainder of the pre-season

Island teams see their exhibition season cut short

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

B.C. Premier John Horgan, a Star Trek fan, can’t resist a Vulcan salute as he takes the oath of office for a second term in Victoria, Nov. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
Horgan names 20-member cabinet with same pandemic team

New faces in education, finance, economic recovery

Most Read