U.S. exacts revenge with U19 game win over Canada
Photo credit: USA Football
Under the Saturday night lights, Football Canada’s under-19 national team lost 33-11 to their U.S. counterparts and host at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando, Florida at the inaugural North American Championship. The game was the first under-19 contest between the two nations since Canada defeated the U.S. to capture gold at the 2016 IFAF U19 World Championship in China.
In the game, Canada faced an explosive team that was out for revenge, tallying 485 total offensive yards. USA Football’s squad was comprised of top recruits headed to major NCAA programs. The team has a long list of alumni including NFL superstars like Jameis Winston, Tyrann Mathieu and Todd Gurley.
With only five days to prepare for the game, Canada’s incoming head coach was happy with the improvement and cohesiveness shown by the team as the week progressed.
“I was so impressed with our guys and they represented Canada so well,” said Steve Sumarah. “They played hard for 48 minutes and we had our chances at times.”
Canada moved the ball well throughout the game. They had two first-and-goal chances but was unable to find the end zone.
“It’s tough when you look at it because we really only had four days to put it [the systems] in. I was pretty proud of them and they fought right until the end.”
“Credit where credit is due, that’s a very good team that we played tonight.”
Despite the box score, Canada’s defense hung in well against a very skilled team.
“Besides maybe a big play here or there, I thought we got off the field at times and gave ourselves good field position. The biggest challenge was just their speed. I thought overall that our guys made plays when they had to and we rotated all the guys in and that was great.”
Kicker David Solie earned Canada’s Player of the Game honours. He accounted for all but two of his team’s 11 points and also downed a 36-yard punt inside the U.S. 5-yard line.
“It’s funny because when we got here, punting was the thing that he was most concerned about,” said Sumarah of Solie. “By the end of it, he hit that punt [that rolled out of bounds inside the 5-yard line] and it was unbelievable.”
Solie also nailed a long 47-yard field goal to give Canada some momentum in the second half.
“The kid’s a big-time player. He just waked out there, wasn’t nervous at all and put it right down the pipes.”
Moving forward Canada will continue to build towards defending their gold medal at the 2018 IFAF U19 World Championship. They’ll look to bring a core group of players back for next year’s game(s).
“I think that what we discovered is that we have some pretty good players in our country. This game’s an opportunity to come out and represent your country, there was a lot of pride on that field and I think that it showed. Going forward, it sets us up and these guys are going to want to be back. Our goal to have a core group back, prep them again, this time next year, and then by the time the world championships is around, we’re ready to play.”
“If we can get these guys bought in and returning, next year’s not introductions, it’s high fiving and seeing your buddy again and that’s kind of the goal of what we’re trying to accomplish.”
|1st||04:38||C19 – SOLIE, D. 41 yd field goal, 5-20 2:21||3-0|
|00:13||US19 – JONES, M. 1 yd run (ZENDEJAS, C. kick), 8-75 4:25||3-6|
|2nd||10:07||US19 – SHENAULT, L. 75 yd pass from STONE, L. (ZENDEJAS, C. kick), 1-75 0:15||3-14|
|06:47||C19 – SOLIE, D. 22 yd field goal, 7-65 3:20||6-14|
|00:38||US19 – DOTSON, M. 36 yd pass from GRIMES, R. (ZENDEJAS, C. kick), 6-98 2:05||6-21|
|3rd||09:54||US19 – JONES, M. 47 yd run (ZENDEJAS, C. kick blockd), 4-67 2:06||6-27|
|01:21||C19 – SOLIE, D. 47 yd field goal, 4-8 1:32||9-27|
|4th||07:54||US19 – LEWIS, E. 31 yd pass from STONE, L. (ZENDEJAS, C. kick blockd), 10-66 5:16||9-33|
|07:54||C19 – LANDRY, T. PAT return||11-33|
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