Host Quebec-Blue advances to gold medal game, will meet defending champs
Photo credit: James Hajjar
Quebec-Blue punched their ticket to the gold medal game after defeating Saskatchewan in Thursday’s second semi-final at Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu’s Alphonse-Desjardins Stadium.
Quebec-Blue will now meet defending champion Ontario on Sunday July 19 at 7 P.M. ET while Sask and Alberta will battle for bronze at 4 P.M.
Quebec got off to a hot start, scoring on the game’s opening possession as Mathieu Blanchard nailed a 15-yard field goal to take a 3-0 lead.
Quebec’s defence began to flex its muscle as defensive back Denver Coursol made a terrific diving interception at Sask’s 40-yard line. The host province took full advantage following a little trickery, converting on a 3rd down fake field goal run to give them a fresh set of downs. Seizing the momentum quarterback Ezechiel Tieide connected with Kevin Mital on a 12-yard touchdown pass to widen the Quebec lead to 10.
Blanchette added a single on a missed field goal to give Quebec an 11 point lead heading into halftime.
To start the second half, a 47-yard Kyle Borsa run put Sask in good position to score on their opponent’s 5-yard line. Backed up on their goal line, Quebec’s defence flexed its muscle once again as Antoine Lemire stepped in front of a Mason Nyhus pass stopping the Saskatchewan drive and momentum dead in its tracks.
Not to be outdone, Saskatchewan’s defence stood strong following the turnover, forcing third down and 23. First Ryder Varga stuffed out Quebec’s first down rush while on second down Tristen Moreau brought down Quebec’s quarterback in the backfield. Quebec conceded the safety to put Saskatchewan on the board 11-2.
Seizing momentum from their defensive stand, a drive that began at their own 35-yard line culminated with a 1-yard Joshua Ewanchyna touchdown run followed by a successful 2-point conversion to make the score 11-10 heading into the final quarter.
Mathieu Blanchette added his second and third field goals of the night to make the final score 14-10.
On tonight’s win and their opponent
“It was of the toughest Canada Cup games I’ve been apart. It’s a heck of a football team on the other side. It shows that they had a ton of guys that played on their Canada Cup team last year. It was a good test for us and I’m glad the kids came together and answered the bell when it needed to be answered.”
On executing the fake field goal run to go up by 10
“It’s huge. We tried to put our kids in good situations where they can succeed. We thought it was a good time to show that and the kids executed it. We’ve been working on it ever since we got here and it’s an onus to the kids that they’ve bought in to what we’re trying to do here.”
On Sunday’s final against Ontario
“It’s going to be a heck of a game but it’s time to go to work now.”
-Brad Collinson, Quebec-Blue Head Coach
“I think our guys battled really hard to the very last whistle. We played against a great team and unfortunately we didn’t come out on top.”
On today’s effort and touchdown to come within one point of Quebec
“It shows what our team is made of. They leave their blood and guts on the field for our team and our province every time they’re out there. I have nothing but respect for each and every one of our guys. They’re a great group of players and you know what we’re going to rebound from this and get ready for Alberta.”
On playing Alberta for bronze
“Alberta is always a very well coached team and they do a lot of good things. We’re just going to move past today and start preparing for the bronze medal game.”
-Kyle Stroeder, Saskatchewan Head Coach
|Players of the game|
|Offensive||#2 Ezechiel Tiede, QB||#8 Finley Easton, REC|
|Defensive||#31 Alec Poirier, LB||#42 Ciaran Sveinbjornson, LB|
This post is also available in: French