GOTW (MB): Perfect season on the line when Portage hosts Elmwood

CFC’s coverage of the Winnipeg High School Football League continues this Thursday night as the Elmwood Giants take on the Portage Trojans. Elmwood was victorious last week as they topped the St. John’s Tigers 38-8. The Portage Trojans are coming off a big 50-6 thumping of the West Kildonan Wolverines.

In last week’s victory against St. John’s the Giants played “Boys from the Wood” style football. Matthew Fox mentioned that his team was balanced, they spread the ball around on offense, and the defense played smart and aggressive.


This year Elmwood has had outstanding play from a core group of grade 12’s. The Giants have been led by quarterback Christian Block, running backs Aaron Kisimba and Jacobien O’Connor, and wide receivers Tyson Amos, James Chornoby and Emmanuel Amiliri. Elwmood has had great line play by Isaiah Binns, Jesse Mcgilvary and Lukas Sutton Scarlett. The Giants have also had strong play from Owen Giancola, Antonio Calder, Valentine Adedji-Afeye and the toughest player on the team Aurora Bell-Ruckhall.

The toughness and physicality of the Elmwood Giants have been their strength this season. “We have a small roster, the majority of our players are Indigenous and new comers to Canada,” replied Fox. “We play with a lot of pride and aggression.  We have each other’s back and have become a tight knit group knowing we not only have to compete against our opponent on game day but everyone else who can’t handle our physicality and swagger.”

Elmwood is looking forward to this game because the Portage Trojans are the top team in the division. “You never need extra motivation to play tough teams like Portage,” said Fox. “You always look forward to playing and beating the best!”

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Ian McCutchin will be the starting pivot for Portage. Ian has 466 yards on the season with 6 touchdowns. Kyler Banfield is the starting running back. Kyler earned 372 yards on the ground including 4 touchdowns. Kyle Van Deynze leads all receivers with 135 yards through the air and 2 touchdowns.

On defense, Brock Miller leads the team with 12 tackles. Carter Little has been solid. Carter sacked the quarterback 3 times this season and has 7 tackles. Kyler Banfield has had an impact on defense as well. Kyler has earned 11 tackles and one sack in six games for Portage.

Heading into this matchup the Portage Collegiate Trojans are leading the Bramwell Conference with a record of 6-0. The Elmwood Giants are in second place at 5-1.Kickoff between Portage and Elmwood is at 4:00 pm on Thursday. The game will be held in Portage La Prairie, Manitoba.

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