Nova Scotia: Week 5 NSVFL recap (junior varsity)
Nova Scotia: Week 5 NSVFL recap (junior varsity)Ameeta Vohra0 Comments
As we approach the midway point of the Nova Scotia Varsity Football League (NSVFL), the Metro Mustangs are still undefeated while the other four teams are jockeying for position in the standings.
This past week, the Timberlea Renegades took over sole possession of second place with a hard fought victory against the Dartmouth Destroyers. Meanwhile, the Mustangs remained in first place as they got past the Halifax Seahawks. Team Nova Scotia under-16 squad had a bye this week.
Here are the results from Week 5 NSVFL action:
Timberlea Renegades 36, Dartmouth Destroyers 12:
On Saturday at Saint Mary’s Huskies Stadium, the Timberlea Renegades pulled out a victory against the Dartmouth Destroyers under sunny skies.
“This game was truly a team effort,” comments Renegades assistant coach David Rent. “We were banged up coming into the game and needed the remaining starters and backups to play and execute a near perfect game.”
“Everyone on the team played up to and beyond our expectations.”
At the half, the Renegades led 14-0 and never relinquished the lead during the entire game.
With this win, the Renegades have sole possession of second place in the league standings. The team now sports a 3-1 record, and are only two points behind the league leading Metro Mustangs. Meanwhile, the Dartmouth Destroyers are still winless this season and are the basement dwellers in the standings with a 0-4 record.
Nate Rostek led the way for the Renegades as he played both sides of the ball during the game. Overall, he scored four touchdowns: three touchdown receptions and one reception from an interception. He amassed 124 yards on 6 receptions, which on average was 20.67 yards per reception. Defensively, Rostek was equally effective on the field as he had five tackles and caught two interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown.
On the offensive side of the ball, Renegades pivot Drew Packman had six completions in eight attempts, threw three touchdowns and has an overall completion rate of 75 percent. Moreover, he amassed 80 yards on eight carries and scored a major. Renegades speed back Hayden Clarke chipped in with 98 yards on nine carries (10.89 yards per carry) while Chandler Tufts had 46 yards on seven carries (6.57 yards per carry).
Defensively, Brayden Culligan led the charge for the Renegades. He racked up seven tackles and one interception. Donovan Blue and Mark Nelson also contributed with a sack a piece.
“Mark Nelson and Donavon Blue both played the entire game on both the offensive and defensive line,” explains the Renegades assistant coach of the team’s effort on Saturday. “Drew Packman, Nate Rostek, Hayden Clarke all had great games offensively.”
“Defensively, the entire unit played sound, fundamental football as both Nate Rostek and Jack Chaisson stood out for us defensively.”
For the Destroyers, quarterback Nate Skeete was valiant in a losing cause. Early in the second half of the game, the pivot got the team within striking distance he rushed into the end zone for a major.
There are three areas which the Renegades would like to improve on their game.
“Going forward into next week, we know that we have to keep working on the basics, tackling, pursuit angles,” explains Rent. “If we have any break down, then the potential for big plays increases.”
As the Renegades prepare to square off next week for the second time this season against the league leading Mustangs, the team needs to shore up all aspects of their game.
“This is the second meeting this season for us and the Mustangs,” adds the Renegades assistant coach. “We have a better idea of each other’s strengths and weaknesses.”
“Metro is a very strong team; we will have to have a great week of practice and a great game.”
(NOTE: player/game stats for the Dartmouth Destroyers were not available at press time)
The Timberlea Renegades face a showdown against the league leading Metro Mustangs on Friday May 25th, 2012 at Saint Mary’s Huskies Stadium. Game time is 6:30pm. Meanwhile, the Dartmouth Destroyers will try to get into the win column in their game against Team Nova Scotia under-16 squad on Friday May 25, 2012. The locale of the game is at Burnside Turf and game start is 8:30pm.
Metro Mustangs 34, Halifax Seahawks 22:
On Sunday at Saint Mary’s Huskies Stadium in a much anticipated game, The Metro Mustangs held onto their grip of first place in the NSVFL league standings with a win over the Halifax Seahawks.
Going into halftime, the Mustangs built a 20-7 lead on the Seahawks. Even though the Seahawks faced a deficit, the team made some adjustments and at one point overtook the league in the second half. In the last two minutes of the game, the Seahawks had a chance to win the game. However, they were unable to capitalize on the opportunity.
With the victory, the Mustangs are alone atop of the league standings with a 4-0 record. On the other hand, the Seahawks slide into third place with a 2-2 mark.
“One key to our win was our ability to run the ball,” summarizes Mustangs head coach Greg Bayne after the win. “The whole offense blocked well creating lanes and space for our running backs to advance the ball.”
“Another key to the win was our ability to make big plays when they were pressing a comeback and shift some of the momentum a turnover at the end helped to seal the victory.”
Offensively for the Mustangs, Taylor MacDonald accounted for 22 of the team’s overall point totals. He registered 230 yards on 16 carries, scored two touchdowns, was good on two field goal attempts and also was good on four one point conversions. Also a defensive force, MacDonald also two tackles.
Furthermore, Alex Bayne scored a major while amassing 33 yards on four rushes, 33 receiving yards on two receptions and five defensive tackles in the game. Ryan Keays had 60 yards on three rushes, 24 yards on two receptions and one defensive tackle.
“Well Taylor MacDonald as nothing short of phenomenal as he running the football for 230 yards and two touchdowns, kicking the football for two field goals and four pats, making tackles on defense; you could not ask for stronger play,” adds the Mustangs head coach of the team’s effort. “Alex Bayne stepped up and made some key plays on offense allowing us to keep the chains moving and scoring a touchdown and also made some big saving takes on defense.”
The Mustangs offensive line came up big in the game. In particular, Drew Alexander was effective.
“Another key was Drew Alexander who stepped up from his fullback spot to fill one of our two vacancies in our starting offensive line,” explains Bayne. “We were worried with these two starters out and little depth at that position that we would not be able to play our style of game which is to run the football.”
“We asked the offensive line to step it up and they answered the call.”
Dustin Brogaard chipped in with 45 yards on ten rushes and nine yards on two receptions. However, the standout had three huge tackles on special teams. Joe Doucet had 20 yards on two receptions while Chris Young registered nine yards on a reception. Mustangs quarterback Sean Muir had eight completions on eleven attempts while accumulating 75 yards and on one play, he rushed for 12 yards.
On the defensive side of the ball for the Mustangs, James Pelley led the way for the victors as he registered twelve tackles. Dustin Buchanan scored a touchdown on an interception and also contributed four tackles in the game.
Meanwhile, Malcolm Hyde had two tackles and an interception while Jesse Boudreau had one sack and a tip which caused an interception. Trevor Howse chipped in with four tackles and an interception while Jay Hachey was effective in the game with one sack and five tackles as he continually put pressure on the Seahawks quarterback.
“Dustin Buchanan with a pick of six and Malcolm Hyde who filled in for our injured linebacker came up with a big time interception to stop their potential game winning drive at the end,” says Bayne of the defensive unit.
In the victory, Bayne says he was impressed overall by the positive reaction the Mustangs demonstrated in spite of missing three starters.
“We asked some guys to play different spots and the team in general to raise the level of play to get the win,” comments Bayne. “We got off to a strong start and the team delivered in the first half giving us a comfortable lead.”
“They continued to fight when we turned the ball over and Halifax battled back to take over the lead in the third quarter; they did not quit and for that they delivered the win in the end.”
As for the Seahawks, pivot Byron Kavanagh had seven completions on 20 attempts, passed for a touchdown but threw three interceptions in the game. Ryan Kublek found the end zone twice while amassing 210 yards on 25 carries. Additionally, receiver Drew MacIsaac scored a touchdown and racked up 53 yards on two receptions. Andray Brady chipped in with 92 yards on two receptions.
On defence, Shaun Robinson and Liam Connell were impressive in a losing cause. Robinson registered 11 tackles on the day while Connell contributed with eight tackles.
In his assessment of what went wrong, the Seahawks co-head coach says the team’s start in the game was the culprit.
“We started slow and gave up some big plays, it put us in a hole early,” assesses the Seahawks co-head coach. “We made some critical mistakes which led to big plays for the other team.”
However ,there were some positives the Seahawks took away from the outcome of the game.
“I was really happy with our team’s ability to overcome a half time deficit and take the lead in the second half as it shows character,” says the Seahawks co-head coach. “If we can play for four quarters, we will can beat anytime in the league.”
“Anytime you down 20-7 at half and you can retake the lead, there is stuff to build from. We had the ball with two minutes left in the game and a chance to win; it’s a tough way to lose but a great learning experience for our young team.”
For his part, Bayne gave credit to the Seahawks for the fight they demonstrated in the second half on the field.
“The Seahawks were ready for us and even when they were down they made adjustments and fought their way back into it,” comments Bayne. “It was impressive.”
On the other hand, the Seahawks co-head coach says the Mustangs were a formidable opponent and deserved the win.
“Metro has some great athletes and they made us pay for our mistakes,” comments the Seahawks co-head coach. “They are a veteran team and that’s why they are undefeated as they played a great game and battled hard.”
One area the Mustangs would like to improve on in the future is ball security.
“You can’t afford to turn the ball over three times and expect to win; if it wasn’t for some takeaways ourselves we could have lost that game even with the lead we had,” adds the Mustangs head coach. “We have to make sure we are more disciplined around penalties because they are drive killers; 1 and 15 or 20 on a good team is NOT where you want to be at all.”
Now with the bye week at hand, the Seahawks will regroup and go back to the drawing board to figure out how to improve on both their offensive and defensive game executions.
“We have a bye week and it’s going to benefit us for the second half of the season,” explains the Seahawks co-head coach. “We’ll be going back to our fundamentals for the next two weeks and it is the little things that need to be improved.”
“We will take the time to put a few tweaks into our offense and defense to prep for our upcoming games.”
As the Seahawks prepare for the second half of the season, they know the stakes are high.
“We are very much looking forward to our second games with all of the teams,” says the Seahawks co-head coach. “If we want to make the championship, we have to win out.”
There is no rest for the Mustangs as they are gearing up for a showdown against their opponents next week, the Timberlea Renegades. Ultimately, this could decide first place in the league standings.
“Next week, we have the Renegades and I know they will be ready,” explains Bayne. “One thing I know about those guys is that they don’t like to lose once to us and will do whatever is required to make sure it does not happen again.”
“They’ll have some tricks up their sleeves I am sure, but then again we’ll be ready too.”
The Metro Mustangs will now face the Timberlea Renegades in a battle that could determine first place overall in the league. The game is slated for Friday May 25th, 2012 at Saint Mary’s Huskies Stadium. Game time is 8:00pm. Meanwhile, the Seahawks get a chance to regroup as they will be on a bye this upcoming week.
Photos of Timberlea Renegades/Dartmouth Destroyers game courtesy of Andrea Fennell of Fennell Photography Group (Facebook Page)
Photos of Halifax Seahawks/Metro Mustangs game courtesy of Cathy Connell
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