#CFCOVFL PREVIEW: Offence clicking on all cylinders for JV Myers Riders

The junior varsity Ottawa Myers Riders of the Ontario Varsity Football Conference (OVFL) comes into this weekend’s contest with an adundance of confidence.

Last week, the team dismantled Halton Cowboys JV on May 30, improving to 2-0 on the season.

After a close call against the Toronto Thunder in Week 1, the Myers Riders came out as a cool, collected unit at the Beckwith Sports Facility near Ottawa.

The Myers Riders fought hard for a 59-8 win, never letting up against the outmatched Cowboys.

As Myers Riders Head Coach Matt Kassner predicted prior to the start of the season, the key to success so far for the team has been their offence.

“Offensively, we are a bit stronger,” Kassner said. “Defensively, we have a ways ago, but our offence should be able to carry us.”

The team has been supported by a few key contributors. Running back Hayden Tripp lit up the field last week averaging 19.3 yards on 11 carries. Tripp earned six first downs for the Myers Riders, helping to keep the team’s offensive possessions alive.

Jean Paul Cimankinda

If Tripp has been the offence’s sparkplug,  running back Jean-Paul Cimankinda has been the team’s closer. Cimankinda earned five touchdowns for the Myers Riders, averaging 14.6 yards on 14 carries. He was unstoppable during tense moments, giving quarterbacks Brayden Lassenba and OPC participant James Keenan confidence.

Wide receiver Honoreal Iloki had three catches for an average of 19 yards; however, his main contribution came on kick returns. He scored a touchdown off an 80 yard return in last week’s game against the Cowboys.

Defensively, the team did enough to secure the win. While there was not a standout performance, the unit on a whole only allowed their opponents to score eight points last week.

“We lost 11 of our 12 defensive starters from last year,” Kassner added. “The new players have a lot to learn in terms of what we expect from them, so it will take time.”

Going into this weekend’s game against the Bucs, the Myers Riders hope to keep the undefeated streak intact. Overall, Kassner said the team is focused on one thing – achieving their key goal for this season.

“Our coaching staff has had a lot of heartbreak,” Kassner said. “Last year, we made it to the finals and lost to the London Jr. Mustangs.”

“We are trying to get over the hump to take the next step.”


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