FCC2017: Timely execution catapults Ontario to victory over host Nova Scotia
Jayden Thompson’s 11 yard touchdown reception with less than three minutes left in the game was the difference as Ontario edged host Nova Scotia 17-16 in opening day action at the 2017 Football Canada Cup.
Ontario will face Saskatchewan in a rematch of the last year’s semi-final on Tuesday July 11th at 4:00pm AT. Nova Scotia will play New Brunswick for the third time this summer, but this time on the national championship stage on Tuesday July 11th at 7:00pm.
Overall, the game between Ontario and Nova Scotia was a battle of field position, defensive struggles and undisciplined play from both sides.
In the first quarter, Nathan Langley scored a two yard major to put Ontario ahead of Nova Scotia.
After Nova Scotia conceded a safety to Ontario, the team scored when Mitchell Tufts connected with Dawson Keirstead for an eight yard touchdown pass.
Both teams were tied at halftime when Ontario conceded a safety to Nova Scotia.
Ontario’s Brian Garrity attempted a 26 yard field goal but it went wide to the left for a rouge.
Early in the fourth quarter, Nova Scotia overtook the lead when Tufts snuck into the end zone for a one yard major.
However, the lack of discipline costed Nova Scotia their lead late in the game as Thompson helped Ontario regain the lead with less than three minutes left in the game.
Players of the Game for Ontario were Connor Irwin-Lewis (offence) and Josef-Luka Colavito (defence). Nova Scotia Players of the Game were Adre Simmonds (offence) and Kamryn Matheson (defence).
Ontario felt a sigh of relief that they were able to squeeze out the win against the host province.
“We finally executed in the last few minutes of the football game,” commented Ontario Head Coach Glen Mills. “Hats off to Nova Scotia; they played a tremendous football game.”
“It was a tremendous effort. We were very sloppy at times and made mistakes.”
While it wasn’t their best effort, Ontario took away some positives out of this game which they will build on for their semi-final matchup on Tuesday.
“We took a lot of selfish and undisciplined penalties,” Mills added. “There’s no need to take them; it’s just guys retaliating.”
“If we do that again on Tuesday, we will lose the football game. We’re fortunate to get this win. These guys gave us everything we could handle. We made some plays down the stretch. The nice thing is that they were battle tested. The positive thing is that they battled and didn’t fold their tents.”
As for the host province, this was a tough and disappointing defeat in front of a supportive home crowd.
“I think execution and penalties kind of got us in the end,” Nova Scotia Head Coach Bryce Fisher said. “We can’t be mad at our guys; they fought through the whole thing.”
“They played four quarters of tough football.”
Heading into their next game on Tuesday, Nova Scotia plans to improve on their mistakes.
“Going forward, we need to minimize our penalties and start picking it up to finish this off as a 2-1 record,” offered Fisher. “That kind of kicked us in the end.”
“It is what it is. We can’t take anything back from here. Going forward, we actually have to make sure going into practice with that focus, mentality to finish off strong finish off with that 2-1 record.”
This post is also available in: French