| Kats, Eagles soar to grid titles
Minor Football: Capital area squads successfully defend provincial titles
Published in the Fredericton Gleaner on Monday, November 16, 2009
The Bliss Carman Eagles beat one set of Titans for the New Brunswick peewee football championship. They'll have to beat another one next week to win the Maritime title.
The Eagles edged the Sackville Titans 14-12 at Rocky Stone Field in Moncton Sunday to capture the provincial championship. Meanwhile, the Fredericton Junior Black Kats won the provincial bantam crown with a 46-0 shellacking of the Moncton Highlanders to capture the provincial bantam crown. It marked the second year in a row representatives from the Capital Area Minor Football Association have captured the title in these age groups.
The Eagles survived a driving rain and a healthy scare from the Titans to win their crown. They started strong, with quarterback Ryker Brennan completing a clock-eating 70 yard drive up the field with a 10-yard keeper to make it 6-0. They boosted the lead to 14-0 late in the second quarter when Greg Francis plunged into the end zone from a yard out. Bennett Wilson booted a two point convert and the Eagles were up 14-0 at the half.
But it wasn't over.
The Titans came back with a touchdown of their own late in the third quarter, with Cody Weeks hitting paydirt to make it 14-6. But, though the Titans held field position, spending most of the fourth quarter in the Eagles' end of the field, they couldn't punch it across for the major score until Weeks scored again with 25 seconds left on the clock to make it 14-12. The Eagles blocked the convert attempt to keep the score at 14-12 and the Titans' short kickoff attempt failed. Bliss Carman was able to run out the clock to protect the lead and the victory. The win gives them the right to travel to Dartmouth, N.S. next Sunday, where they'll battle the Timberlea Titans for the Maritime title.
The Junior Black Kats had a much easier time in the bantam tilt, rolling to the lopsided win over the Highlanders.
They set the tone on the first play from scrimmmage when Derrick Nickerson dashed 75 yards down the left sideline for a quick six-pointer. Jeremy Boutout booted the two point convert, and the Kats were on their way. Quarterback Kyle Arsenault connected with Weston Durling on a 30-yard touchdown pass late in the first quarter, Boutout applied the boot again, and it was 16-0 after the first quarter.
The Kats didn't look back. Arsenault fired a pair of 40-yard strikes, to Durling and Tom McGinn, respectively, and the successful converts made it 32-0 at the half. Arsenault connected with Ryan Colpitts on a 25-yard strike and Blake Stewart dashed 25 yards on run for the last two scores, with Boutout converting both to complete the scoring. The Kats will face the Dartmouth Destroyers for the Maritime championship next Sunday at 3:30 p.m. at the Dartmouth Burnside Turf to complete the doubleheader.