Under-16 Western Challenge: Saskatchewan’s offence powers team to victory over Manitoba
Saskatchewan advances to gold medal game, Manitoba to battle for bronze
Kamloops, British Columbia (July 15, 2019) – The 2019 Under-16 Western Challenge kicked off on Monday with an all-Prairie showdown.
Saskatchewan’s offence proved to be too much for Manitoba at Hillside Stadium in Kamloops, British Columbia. With a big first half, Saskatchewan defeated Manitoba 38-2.
With the win, Saskatchewan advances to the gold medal game where they will face the winner of the Alberta/British Columbia game on Thursday July 18, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. PST. Meanwhile, Manitoba will battle the loser of the Alberta/British Columbia game on Thursday July 18, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. PST.
In the first half, Saskatchewan’s offence, mainly quarterback Griffin Sander and Brody Nelson found their rhythm early and often. Sander would pass the ball to Nelson and he would tear up the field gaining first downs and yardage in the process.
With 7:44 left in the first quarter, Saskatchewan decided to go on 3rd down but fell short and turned over the ball on downs. On the next play, Manitoba quarterback Zachary Topping threw an interception in the hands linebacker Ryan Makowsky.
Saskatchewan would capitalize on Manitoba’s gaffe. Sander passed the ball to Nelson would sprint down the field to the 5 yard line. On 1st and goal with 5:58 left in the quarter, Sander once again found his main target Nelson, who rushed into the end zone to score the first touchdown of the game and giving Saskatchewan the early lead.
Manitoba almost tied up the game when Topping dashed down the field for a major. However, the touchdown was recalled because Manitoba drew an illegal block penalty.
With 2:57 left in the quarter, Ma Ner Plaw Winning had a great sprint down the field to get the ball deep into Saskatchewan territory. However, Topping was sacked by defensive lineman William Parks to force a turnover on downs.
Sander’s ball to the intended receiver was bobbled and Manitoba defensive lineman Jett Sweitzer recovered the fumble.
In the second quarter, Manitoba’s offence continued to struggle and were not able to get anything going. Just over a minute into the game, Jaxson Kramchynsky bobbled the ball in the end zone and concerned Manitoba would lunge for the ball, he conceded a safety in the end zone to pull Manitoba within five points of Saskatchewan.
Saskatchewan would extend their lead when kicker Isaac Matity added a field goal.
On the last play before the half, Saskatchewan would strike again. The culmination of a 75 yard drive was a Dawson Lennea touchdown reception.
At halftime, Saskatchewan enjoyed a 17-2 lead over Manitoba.
Saskatchewan continued to click offensively in the third quarter. Just over three minutes into the frame, Sander connected with Lennea who galloped into the end zone for a touchdown. It was Lennea’s second major of the game.
After a long delay due to an injury to Mataeo Mohamed, Saskatchewan got to work right away. With 5:24 left in the game, Jake Farrell connected with Isaac Matity for a touchdown reception.
Adding some final assurance, Farrell passed the ball to Dayton Varga who sprinted into the end zone tally a major and put the game out of reach for Saskatchewan.
Offensive Players of the Game were running backs Brody Nelson (Saskatchewan) and Ma Ner Plaw Winning (Manitoba). Defensive Players of the Game were defensive linemen Toryn Swystun-Bernes (Saskatchewan) and Vincent Kipling (Manitoba).
This post is also available in: French