High school roundup (ON – SIMCOE) [6]: Usual suspects pull out victories, Vikings a team no one wants to face, TAQ a program on the rise

Last week marked the penultimate week of the regular season in both Simcoe County leagues, with a full slate of action headlined by a 5-game Thursday across the SCAA and CSASC. The week wrapped up on Friday with our Game of the Week between St. Joan of Arc and St. Peter’s on the Catholic side. But first, on Wednesday, two Barrie Public board rivals did battle to conclude the Georgian Football Festival on the beautiful J.C. Massie Field at Georgian College’s Barrie campus.


Innisdale Invaders (1-3) @ Barrie North Vikings (3-1) – Wednesday, September 18

The 3-1 Barrie North Vikings kicked off Week 5 in the SCAA with a mid-week affair against their longtime rivals, the Innisdale Invaders.

This was a one-sided affair right from the opening kickoff, as an undermanned Invaders’ squad struggled to contain a lethal Vikings’ passing game. After a fumble on the opening play from scrimmage by Innisdale deep in their own end, QB Zach Patfield hooked up with wideout David Corcoran for the first of five passing TD’s on the day for Patfield. Then, early in the 2nd, Patfield connected with slotback Josh Whyte, which put Barrie North up 14-0.

The Vikings began pouring it on late in the first half, scoring three touchdowns in the final four minutes. Patfield and receiver Alex Glass joined forces on two deep scores, and then after forcing a safety, Gabe Cain took the ensuing return all the way down to the 2-yard line off a reverse, after which running back Matt Koufis pounded it in to give Barrie North a commanding 37-0 lead at the half.

Innisdale’s only points of the game would come on a touchdown connection between QB Jalen Cooper and wide receiver Curtis King in the third. That touchdown was only the second major surrendered by the Vikings’ defence this season. Their defence forced six turnovers in the game, with Clayton Mrazek, River Wells, Duncan Montague and Wyatt Brown leading the way. The Vikings’ offence added one more touchdown in the fourth on the third Patfield-to-Glass pass play of the game to hit paydirt.

Glass told The Barrie Examiner after the game that the team is locked in right now, and that there was “some good chemistry between the receivers and the quarterback,” in this one. “We practice after school every day and we’re really focused in. Our coaches put some emphasis on keeping this streak going, and we don’t want to lose another one,” said the Vikings’ wideout.


Orillia Nighthawks (0-4) @ CFC50 Nantyr Shores Tritons (4-0) – Thursday, October 19

The CFC50 Nantyr Shores Tritons looked to keep their undefeated record in tact on Thursday when the welcomed in the 0-4 Orillia Nighthawks.

This game, though, was more important for its off-field implications than the Tritons’ on-field performance. Both the junior and senior Triton teams donned pink socks in support of breast cancer research. The players were challenged to raise $20 each, and if they all did that, the team would wear the pink socks. Many players ended up raising hundreds of dollars, with the team doubling its goal of $1000 raised for cancer research, and brining in nearly $2000. That donation was then matched by an anonymous corporate contribution.

There was a game, though, and Nantyr showed why they are undefeated and included on the CFC 50. They led after one quarter by a score of 28-0, and then by a 42-0 scoreline at halftime. The Tritons’ offence, which scored on its first four possessions, was led by Dave Johnson. Johnson amassed 122 rushing yards and another 75 yards through the air, including a touchdown.

Defensively and on special teams, Steven Sadl-Kolcheski was all over the field, factoring in on several plays and helping to keep the Nighthawks offence from cracking the scoreboard.

With the win, the Tritons see themselves climb up the CFC50 list for a fifth straight week.


Bear Creek Kodiaks (2-2) @ Collingwood Fighting Owls (0-4) – Thursday, October 19

After a slow start to the season which saw the Bear Creek Kodiaks drop their first two games by a total of 19 points – including a three-point overtime loss to the Banting Marauders – they clawed their way back to .500 with wins over Innisdale and Orillia. Now they were looking to get above the .500 mark on the year with a victory over the winless Collingwood Fighting Owls.

It was the Kodiaks who came out took it to the home team early on. The Kodiaks did not allow the Owls to do much of anything, giving up only a field goal and a rouge point to Collingwood. The Kodiaks’ offence was on its game all throughout the day, and they were able to come away with the decisive 36-4 victory.

That win vaults the Kodiaks into a position, at least temporarily, to host a first round playoff game with a record of 3-2. Collingwood drops to 0-5 with the loss.

Eastview Wildcats (4-0) @ Banting Marauders (2-2) – Thursday, October 19

The Eastview Wildcats travelled to Alliston last Thursday to battle the Banting Marauders, as they looked to maintain their spotless record heading into a Week 6 battle with the Nantyr Shores Tritons.

Much of the Eastview offensive attack this season has lied at the feet of wideout Will McCulloch and tailback Destin Pearson. Although newcomers to the senior high school game, they both have big-game experience playing rep ball with the Huronia Stallions. They, once again, shouldered the Wildcats’ offensive load against Banting. Pearson ran in two touchdowns, will McCulloch had one through the air and QB Braidon Foster scampered for one of his own. Running backs Jack Prouty and Andrew Brown added another threat to the Wildcats’ backfield with strong games.

Defensively, the team has been lead by linebacker brothers Lucas and MacKenzie Smith, safety Carter Drury and offensive lineman Chris Young. This game was no different, as all three turned on solid performances on the defensive side of the rock. Cam Vanbodegom has also had a good rookie season at linebacker, and has consistently been listed as a player to watch by Eastview coach Mark Welch.

SCAA Week 6 Schedule:

Barrie North Vikings (4-1) @ Bear Creek Kodiaks (3-2) – Wednesday, October 25 (1:30 pm)
CFC50 Nantyr Shores Tritons (5-0) @ Eastview Wildcats (5-0) – Wednesday, October 25 (1:30 pm)
Banting Marauders (2-3) @ Innisdale Invaders (1-4) – Wednesday, October 25 (2:30 pm)
Collingwood Fighting Owls (0-5) @ Orillia Nighthawks (0-5) Wednesday, October 25 (3:30 pm)


Patrick Fogarty Flames (0-4) @ St. Thomas Aquinas Stingers (3-1)

The St. Thomas Aquinas Stingers are a Varsity team playing against schools much bigger in size, numbers, and often age, but judging by their recent performance, you wouldn’t know it.

They welcomed in the rebuilding Patrick Fogarty Flames on Thursday afternoon, looking to win their third consecutive game. The Stingers took it to the Flames early and often, and came away with a lopsided victory, by a score of 54-0. That win sets up the second matchup of the year between the Stingers and the Joan of Arc Knights. Incidentally, the Knights are the only team to score off the Stingers this season; all four of the victories have come in shutouts.

Stingers’ Head Coach Terry Posylek gave credit to the retooling Flames program for taking on the difficult task of introducing a young team to the rigours of a high school football season and coaching the team up to be strong in the future. He also said this was a good opportunity for his starting players to continue learning an evolving offensive playbook, and giving the Grade 9’s and 10’s on the team a chance to see game action at the senior level. Posylek says he relies on about 10-12 seniors to see action on both sides of the ball, and complements his older players for being strong role models to the juniors playing up.

In previewing next week’s matchup, Posylek said, “Joan of Arc ha[s] set the gold standard for high school football in GBSSA for the past several years. “We played them in Week 2 and suffered a rather one-sided loss 38 – 6 however, the score didn’t really reflect the tenor of the game,” he said. “Their top receiver (who happens to be an OFSAA level sprinter) scored 4 touchdowns – 3 against our grade 9 and 10 cornerback and safety who were in over their heads.”

“Not to take anything away from JOA – we have a lot of respect for their program – but we are gearing up to give them a run for their money this Thursday.”

St. Joseph’s Jaguars (1-3) @ St. Theresa’s Thunder (2-2) – Thursday, October 19

The St. Theresa’s Thunder were looking to get back on the winning track and move back above the .500 mark when they hosted the St. Joseph’s Jaguars on Thursday in Midland.

The Thunder, who have a few 5th year players to bolster their young roster including Zechariah Willems and Brody Moreau, were able to come out strong and make their presence known early. They got out to a quick lead and would never relinquish it. Led by a “well-balanced [offensive] attack,” St. T’s cruised to a 40-13 win, giving them a 3-2 record on the season.

We improved in some areas,” Head Coach Mike DeMunnik said, “but still have work to do as the regular season comes to an end.” [We want to] continue to improve on our execution defensively and offensively. Continued team play will always improve the end result.”

CFC GAME OF THE WEEK: St. Joan of Arc Knights (4-0) @ St. Peter’s Panthers (2-2)

The powerhouse St. Joan of Arc Knights took their perfect, almost-scoreless record on the road this past Friday as they did battle with the St. Peter’s Panthers in an all-Barrie grudge match.

The Knights came in as the clear favourites, but St. Peter’s held their own in the opening quarter, giving up just a pair of Ish Sookwah running touchdowns, and trailed 14-0 after the first. After that, though, it was all Knights. Sookwah would add pair of touchdowns – to give him four in the first half – before the 2nd was out, and then Jeremy Hussey would go on a burst to the house to make it 35-0 at the half.

It was more of the same in the 2nd half, as Liam Harrison reeled in the first throwing TD of the day for the Knights, and then Jordan Travis intercepted a pass on the second play following Harrison’s major and take it all the way back the other way for his first score of the season, which made it 49-0 after three. The Knights would add another TD in the fourth and a field goal from Travis, who was 8-8 on converts in this one to go along with the pick-six, and the Knights won in a rout (again) by a score of 59-0 for a second consecutive week.

Knights’ quarterback Justin Winn talked after the game about how having a strong running attack really opens up the offence.

“Having a lethal run game is really important to our offence because it always keeps the defence on their heels,” he said. “Also it’s important because in a few weeks we have no clue what the weather will be like, but no matter what the weather is like we will always be able to run the football.”

That said, it is important to mix in the pass game as well.

“I think mixing in both runs and passes right at the start of a game and showing that we are able to do both effectively eliminates teams from being able to stack the box for a run or add an extra safety for pass,” Winn said, “which allows us to go on the field and run our playbook how we want.”

On the defensive side of the ball, it was business as usual for a Knights’ squad that has allowed all of six points in five games.

“It all started with the guys in the trenches, our line was prepared and it showed,” said corner Kayden Peters. “The pressure they were able to put on the St.Peters offence helped the linebackers and DB’s make a lot of the plays we were able to make. We know we have to go into playoffs with lots of momentum and we need to make sure we are executing each and every play. So far I think we are doing a very good job of that.”

It’s not easy to have such a stout defence, and it takes a lot of work both on and off the field to keep it this consistent throughout a six-game season.

“It starts with practice, focusing on fundamentals at the beginning of the year and developing from there,” Peters said. “We never enter a game without ensuring we have a game plan and three backup plans [in case] anything changes.

“Its also about who wants it more and I can guarantee that each and every one of us are on a mission to prove that we want it the most and when the time comes it will definitely show.”

Travis not only had a pick-six; he also had two interceptions he didn’t take back for touchdowns. He’s put a lot of work in to becoming the best he can be at his position.

“I’ve trained hard throughout the last few years to get my technique as good as I can get it so when I see something I can react to it right away and make a play,” he said. “I was on a roll and I was given the opportunity to ball out and I capitalized on my opportunity.”

Games like the one Travis had can do wonders for you as a player, and it’s a gratifying feeling when the work you put in away from the field begins to show itself on the gridiron, Travis says.

“Having a game like that is always a really good confidence booster and it really shows what hard work in practice does for you,” he said. “When results show from putting your all into practice it is the best feeling and it makes you want to go even harder, so that’s what I’m going to do moving forward and hopefully keep this up for the rest of the season.”

Winn gives us a preview of what he expects from a tough St. Thomas Aquinas club this week.

“I think they’re gonna come out fighting; we know their goal is to come out Thursday and beat us,” he said. “They aren’t going to let us walk all over them and we have to show up with intensity and be ready to play. But that all starts with a hard week of practice to make sure we are prepared.”

CSASC Week 6 Schedule

Patrick Fogarty Flames (0-5) @ St. Joseph’s Jaguars (1-4) – Thursday, October 26 (Time not yet known)
St. Thomas Aquinas Stingers (4-1) @ St. Joan of Arc Knights (5-0) – Thursday October 26 (2:00 pm – Georgian College)
St. Theresa’s Thunder (3-2) @ St. Peter’s Panthers (2-3) – Friday, October 27 (Time not yet known)


The Fox 40 Prospect Challenge (FPC) is a series of elite showcase games that feature the best tackle football players from across Canada aged 10-19 years. Tournaments are played in Central Canada (ON) and the West Coast (BC).




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