#CFCOVFL PLAYOFF PREVIEW: JV Myers Riders focused on “winning it all”

The junior varsity Ottawa Myers Riders have officially booked a spot in the Conference Finals after beating the Oshawa Hawkeyes 49-34.

Myers Riders Head Coach Matt Kassner said coaching staff should be considered responsible for the team’s successful season.

“As a head coach, I have been fortunate enough to have such a great staff, and it makes my job much easier,” Kassner said. “I have given my coaches free range to coach players however they want because I trust them.”

In addition to Kassner, the Myers Riders have 13 coaches on staff, which has given him the luxury of having certain coaches responsible for specific positions. He says this consistency has made a big difference for his players.

“Our coaches have been able to adapt to each player, know their strengths and weakness, and get the most out of them,” Kassner added.

AJ Oickle

Now in his fourth year as Head Coach, Kassner has been able to slowly assemble an impressive roster of coaches. He says he was looking for a mix of veterans and younger coaches who have recently played competitively.

“All of our coaches have either been coaching for 10 years or more, or have recently played CIS football,” Kassner said. “Given that, we have a great staff and everyone is more than qualified to be coaching.”

Not only is Kassner Head Coach, but he has also taken on the role of Defensive Coordinator. He says he has felt far less pressure because the team’s two other coordinators.

Jean Paul Cimankinda

Ntare Bainomugisha is the Myers Riders’ Offensive Coordinator. In his first year with the team, Bainomugisha has created one of the league’s most potent offences, which has scored 43 points per game this year.

“He brought in a brand new offensive staff,” Kassner said. “They have been able to produce the league’s best running game.”

“They are truly making all of our offensive players better.”

Special Teams Coordinator John Buck has a longer history with Kassner and the Myers Riders.

“He has been with me since day one,” Kassner said. “He has a wealth of experience and our special teams are always great because of it.”

Going forward, Kassner and his staff have one goal in mind: winning it all.

“We are undefeated so far, but that is not sufficient for us,” Kassner said. “We want to finish the season with a victory.”

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