Bounced out

OVFL:  Grenadiers’ playoff stretch ends courtesy of red hot Raiders

For a team that won five straight games at the beginning of the season, one would think that they had the opportunity to go all the way. However, the Limestone Grenadiers stumbled out of the gate in the second half and dropped two of their final four games of the season.

In the first week of the playoffs, the Grenadiers capitalized on the misfortune of the Hawkeyes  and defeated the team 42-7.  However, it appears as though the tables had turned for Grenadiers as they fell victim to Markham Raiders. While it was not by a landslide  in terms of the score,  it was the Raiders who seized the opportunity and benefited  from the Grenadiers’ mishaps on the field.

The Grenadiers offensive front line missed blocks that in turn left their quarterback open for tackles behind the line of scrimmage. With the lack of blocking and no secure pocket, starting quarterback Dylan Bell re-injured his shoulder and was taken out for the remainder of the game.

Kingston’s offensive line also suffered from dropped passes, mis-throws and dropping a simple hand-off. In the first half alone, the Grenadiers had four turnovers.

With 1:53 remaining in the first half, a late field goal by Michael Bashall got the Grenadiers on the scoreboard. Farhan Imtiaz shed more light to the Grenadiers when he picked off a pass from Raiders’ quarterback Matt Prucha with 51 seconds left in the first half. Kingston’s offense was given a free ride to Markham’s 20-yard line from penalties. With just over ten seconds left in the half, Bashall’s 28-yard field goal attempt was kicked wide.

At halftime, the Grenadiers found themselves trailing by 10-points as the Raiders enjoyed  a 13-3 lead.

The second half of the game didn’t yield any better success for the Grenadiers. After failing to recover the kickoff to start the half, Kingston gave up 21 unanswered points before one last push.

With less than six minutes remaining in the game, the Grenadiers scored their only two touchdowns of the game. Josh Boursier found the goal-line on a two-yard run while Cole Goodfellow completed a five-yard run.

However, the last minute push was not enough for the Grenadiers as the team would see their playoff run come to an end courtesy of the Raiders, 34-17.

Bell, who injured his shoulder after the team’s second possession, had two completions for 30 yards.

Quarterback Dylan Fisher, who came in relief of Bell, finished the day with 10 completions in 25attempts  for 88 passing yards with one interception – his longest being 17 yards and six first downs.

Matt Pendergast lead all receivers with a team-best 42-yards on three carries while Carter Cook had four completions for 35 yards and two first downs.

Ball carriers Goodfellow and Konner Burtenshaw were the “go-to” guys throughout the entire game. Goodfellow had 22 carries for a total of 44 yards. Burtenshaw had 14 carries for 53-yards, his longest being 26 yards.

Kicker Michael Bashall completed both extra point conversions.

The Markham Raiders will play the undefeated Ottawa Myers Riders in the Wettges Conference Finals.


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