CFC50 Game of the Week PREVIEW (BC): Defending AAA champs take on Rams

British Columbia has been playing for almost three weeks in non-conference play, and this weekend will be no different with a competitive matchup between AAA powerhouses the Terry Fox Ravens and the Mount Douglas Rams on Friday at 4:00pm. Both teams are CFC50 ranked on the national high school rankings and the Ravens are the defending AAA Provincial Champions. Needless to say, this game is going to give us a good first look at two of the top programs in the lower mainland.

We caught up with the head coach of the Rams, Mark Townsend, and defensive coordinator of the Ravens, Tom Kudaba and got their thoughts on this weekend’s game.

I think you can throw rankings away at this point of the season but when these two teams get together it will be competitive,” said Coach Kudaba. While Coach Townsend pointed out, “We face a familiar rival and a huge challenge against this year’s #1 ranked team Terry Fox.”

Both these teams are young. The Ravens graduated a slough of veterans, many of them went on to U Sports and beyond. Mt. Doug has been in the process of bringing up their young team from last year and they are still a work in progress.

According to Coach Townsend, they had a good week of practice, but they still need to improve in some area’s if they are going to come out with the win on Friday.

“We need to improve in several areas including our tackling angles and our discipline, as we took far too many penalties on both sides of the ball,” he explained, even though they came away with a 27-6 win against Argyle last weekend.

Coach Townsend said that in the game against Argyle, their line play was solid and the team performed fairly well considering the penalties. They will be focusing on getting their overall assignments on both sides of the ball down this week during practice and will be working hard on their tackling in order to play well against the Ravens.

Jaden Severy (23) (Photo: Terry Fox Athletics)

Recognizing the talent that the Ravens have, the Rams have already identified who they need to shut down and account for early in the game.

“We must be able to contain Running Back Jaden Severy and Quarterback Jevaun Jacobsen from Terry Fox, as they have great athleticism and explosiveness,” said Coach Towensend. “Mason Reeves is an outstanding linebacker for Fox, and we must account for him on the field.” Jacobsen has the huge undertaking of taking over from CFC100 Jeremy Kankolongo who was also their star running back, but has gone to Cégep in Quebec.

Severy believes they will matchup “pretty well” against the Mt. Doug squad. “I know they lost some key players too in the off-season and their roster isn’t as big plus their number 1 QB, Gideon Kremler, is still out which is a huge loss for them,” he said. 

“I think we are really excited to get the season underway and finally have a preseason game on this side of the border. We learned a lot from our Lynden game – made some mental mistakes down there, but have been working really hard the past 2 weeks getting ready for Mount Doug and I believe we are ready.”

Isaiah Cardilicchia (12), Soren Hallschmid (54), Jake Ounsted (75)

In addition to those players, Fox’s defensive end, Adam Tennant, linemen, Mike Evans and Matt Baddege, and Mitch Bye at Safety are all players that Mt. Doug will have to look out for.

For the Ravens, they can breathe a sigh of relief for a short while as one of the Rams top players and quarterback, Gideon Kremler, is coming off of knee surgery and we aren’t sure how much time, if any, he will have during this game.

“They are missing arguably one of the top players in high school, Gideon Kremler, so that will affect them a bit for sure,” Coach Kudaba mentioned.

Fox will have to contain Mt. Doug’s traditionally prolific spread offense. They will also have to stop the running attack. The Rams boast some high end talent in defensive tackle, CFC100 Jake Ounsted, defensive end, CFC100 Soren Hallschmid, and offensive tackle, CFC100 Phil Grohovac. Also look for receiver Dante Carbone to be a major contributor as he flashed a lot of potential at this year’s Fox 40 Prospect Challenge – West Coast.

Kudaba also mentions that they will need to be very good at Special Teams. “I think the Special Teams is one area where we need to be very good at. Mt. Douglas does innovative things in this aspect of the game so we need to be at our best.”

Phil Grohovac (58)

As mentioned above, Terry Fox is loaded with a group of grade 11 players that are just coming into their own. The Rams know this and will try and capitalize on the inexperience of the team. 

Any time you face the #1 ranked team in the Province, you know there will be challenges and adversity.  We must be disciplined and overcome any adversity we face against the powerhouse Terry Fox squad,” said Coach Townsend.

Coach Kudaba said overall they are looking forward to this matchup and will use it to further develop their game plan for the regular season. If you recall, they lost both their non-conference games last year at the start of the season, but by the time the regular season started, they knew what offense and defensive packages they were going to use. 

Regardless of the outcome this week, our goal is to improve from two weeks ago and get ready for our season opener,” he stated. 

This will definitely set the stage for the rest of BC high school football as all eyes will be watching to see what sort of team Terry Fox is bringing to the table this year as they try and repeat their championship season last year. As highly competitive the AAA scene is, every week needs to be a good week of practice and the execution of the game plan has to played out to the T if success is to be had.

Kick off is at 4:00pm on Friday the 15th at Perry Percy Stadium in Coquitlam.




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