NSSAFFL: Blowouts, shutouts and lopsided victories in Week 1 (RECAP)

Who needs a tiering system?

Blowouts, shutouts and lopsided victories were the theme of Week 1 action in the Nova Scotia Student Athletic Federation Football League (NSSAFFL).

The Charles P Allen Cheetahs crushed the Avon View Avalanche 72-0 while the Sir John A MacDonald Flames extinguished the Dr.John Hugh Gillis Royals 78-0.  New team West Kings Wolverines did not get a warm welcome in their first game in the league, as the team lost 51-7 to the Lockview Dragons while the Sackville High Kingfishers return back to league play resulted in a 36-0 loss to the Horton Griffins.

Cole Harbour High Cavaliers shutout the Dartmouth High Spartans 25-0 while Central Kings Gators coasted by the North East Kings Titans 38-7. In the game of the week, the defending Tier 1 champions Citadel Phoenix began their 2013 season with a 36-6 victory over the Prince Andrew Panthers.

Last night, the JL Ilsley Judges defeated the Auburn Drive Eagles 28-11.

Here are results from Week 1 action in the NSSAFFL:


At Burnside Turf on Thursday, the Citadel Phoenix managed 288 yards rushing, 131 yards passing for a total of 419 yards offense as the team scored a 36-6 opening week victory over the Prince Andrew Panthers.

For the Panthers, quarterback Nate Skeete scored on a 60 yard on a sixty yard run to give the team their only points of the game.

“We did our best to take care of the football early on as it was very slippery with the wet weather,” commented Phoenix Co-Head Coach and Defensive Coordinator Jeff Lawley in his postgame comments. “Our defense played a team but there are many things we need to improve – too numerous to list!”

“This was a positive start for us but that’s all it was, a start.”

The Citadel Phoenix will now host the Central Kings Gators on Friday September 13th, 2013 at Burnside Turf.  Kickoff is 6:00pm.  As for the Prince Andrew Panthers, they will seek their first win on the road as they face the Avon View Avalanche on Monday September 16th, 2013.  Game time is 4:30 at Avon View.


On Thursday at Burnside Turf, the Cole Harbour Cavaliers shutout their rivals the Dartmouth High Spartans 25-0.

For the Cavaliers, quarterback Mike Wedsworth has eight completions in 16 attempts for 208 passing yards and two touchdowns.  Running back Liam McVarnock amassed 236 rushing yards in 18 carries and two touchdowns while receiver Jared Melnyk had seven receptions for 202 yards.

“For our first game, we were pleased with the successes we had but have plenty of things we need to work on,” said Cavaliers Head Coach Peter Crouse of the win.  “With a young team, the mental aspect of the game becomes even more important to focus on in order to improve our execution.”

The Cole Harbour Cavaliers will enjoy a bye week this upcoming week.  Meanwhile, the Dartmouth High Spartans will attempt to get on the win column as the team takes on the Halifax West Warriors on Thursday September 12th at Mainland Commons.  Kickoff is 7:00pm.


In Antigonish under Friday Night Lights, the Sir John A MacDonald Flames crushed Dr.John Hugh Gillis Royals 78-0.

Running back Hayden Clarke had 93 rushing yards on 4 carries (the longest 31 yards) and ran into the end zone for three touchdown scores for the Flames.  Nate Rostek had two majors, including one on a 65 yard punt return.  Wide receiver Dylan Lunney scored on an 85 yard return and added another touchdown in the game.  Devis Stevens, Ryan Merlin (2 catches, 77 yards), Zach Leger and Brayden Culligan (2 returns, 80 total yards) all scored touchdowns in the victory.

Quarterback Lorenz MacDonald, had four completions in six attempts for 129 passing yards.

At halftime, the Flames enjoyed a 64-0 lead over the Royals.

“Sir John A Flames played physical football versus JH Gillis,” assessed Flames Head Coach Steve Majury after the game.  “Lorenz MacDonald, Hayden Clarke and Dylan Lunney starred offensively on the score sheet with Patrick Logan having a huge game on the offensive line.”

“Defensively Brayden Culligan, Zack Leger, Donovan Blue and Scott Logan were impact performers for the Flames defense.  We played tough disciplined defense and had a strong special team day with explosive offensive plays.”

While this was a lopsided yet decisive victory, the Flames have some areas of their game the team needs to work on this week.

“We need to improve our timing offensively which will require more work in practice,” added Majury.  “We played well for game one, but we must be much better for game two versus Horton High School.”

The Sir John A MacDonald Flames will host the Horton Griffins on Thursday September 12th, 2013 at 4:30pm.  Meanwhile, Dr. John Hugh Gillis Royals will look for their first win of the season when the team travels to West Kings to take on the newest kids on the block, the Wolverines on Sunday September 15th, 2013.  Kickoff is 1:00pm.


On Saturday afternoon at Kinsmen Field in Canning, the visiting Central Kings Gators spoiled the home opener for the Northeast Kings Titans by defeating the team 38-7.

Matthew Priestnall scored three touchdowns in the victory while Ben Best had over 150 rushing yards on 18 carries for the Gators.  Quarterback Jacob Shephard had three touchdown passes and over 120 passing yards to lead the Gators offense to victory.

“We had a great game from our defense as a whole for our first game,” said Gators Head Coach Larry Priestnall after the game.  “Great job by our defensive coaches and players Sam Jennings Nick Miller and Noah Graves.”

“Our defensive backs played very well with two interceptions for Ben Best and one for Andrew Bezanson.”

The Central Kings Gators will play the defending Tier 1 champions Citadel Phoenix on Friday September 13th at Burnside Turf.  Kickoff is 6:00pm.  Meanwhile, the Northeast Kings Titans will host the Charles P Allen Cheetahs on Friday September 13th at Kinsman Field in Canning.  Game start is 4:30pm.


In Wolfville on Saturday evening, the Horton Griffins ruined the Sackville High Kingfisher’s return to league play by shutting out the team 36-0 in front of the hometown crowd.

Jake Melanson connected with Gabe Morgan for a 40 yard touchdown reception to open the scoring after getting an interception on the previous play for the Griffins. Cam Davidson had a monstrous day on the field as he scored two rushing majors and added two more on punt returns. Fullback Duncan Hill also chipped in with two touchdowns (45 and 94 yard scores) and also caught two interceptions for the team.

The Griffins defense were also a key difference in the game as the team only allowed the Kingfishers 162 total offensive yards.

“The defense stood strong the whole game with three fumble recoveries and four interceptions to our one fumble on offense,” explained Griffins Head Coach Alec Hyndman after the win.  “It was a great team effort and nice start to the season to win the home opener.”

The Horton Griffins will be on the road this week as the team will visit the Sir John A MacDonald Flames on Thursday September 12th, 2013 at 4:30pm.  As for the Sackville High Kingfishers, the team will try to get their first win of the season when the team tangles with the Lockview Dragons on Saturday September 14th 2013 at Metropolitan Field.  Kickoff is 3:00pm.


At Avon View on Sunday afternoon, the Charles P Allen Cheetahs began their 2013 campaign on a winning note as the team coasted by the Avalanche 72-0.

2012 NSSAFFL Nova Division MVP Taylor MacDonald continued where he left off from last season. MacDonald was unstoppable on the field in the first quarter as he scored five rushing touchdowns.  Additionally, he added a touchdown on a punt return.

Aidan Majury added three rushing touchdowns while quarterback Sean Muir ran into the end zone for a score.  Will Chamberlain added a kickoff return major while Matt Bayne scored on a punt return.

The Avalanche conceded two safeties to the Cheetahs.  Kicker Greg Hutchins was successful on two field goal attempts from 35 and 40 yards.

“Taylor played the first quarter and two minutes of second quarter before we took him out to minimize scoring,” explained Cheetahs Head Coach Michael McPherson. “We did this with as many of our starters as possible in second quarter to keep the score down.”

Avalanche Head Coach Jim Bryan’s commented about the lacklustre performance on the field against the Cheetahs.

“The score says it all,” expressed Bryan.  “We were outmatched in every facet of game.”

“Playing this game did nothing for either team. Avon View was more inexperienced, younger, and less skilled. On a positive note, we are not packing up the tents; we will live to fight another day.”

The Charles P Allen Cheetahs will now gun for their second win of the season as the team will travel to Kinsman Field in Canning to face the Northeast Kings Titans on Friday September 13th at 4:30pm.  Meanwhile the Avon View Avalanche will regroup and attempt to win their first game of the season as the team will host the Prince Andrew Panthers on Monday September 16th at 4:30pm.


At West Kings on Sunday afternoon, the host Wolverines were given a rude welcome to the NSSAFFL courtesy of the Lockview Dragons as the team lost 51-7.

Morgan Laws had two passing touchdowns and one rushing major in addition to 136 passing yards and 125 rushing yards in the victory for the Dragons.  Running back Mike LeBlanc ran into the end zone for three touchdowns and added 167 rushing yards on 17 carries while Matt Harnish added a rushing major. Joe Doucette added two touchdown receptions for the Dragons.

Defensively for the Dragons, both Justin Weimer and Zack Hughes registered 10 tackles each.

“The defense was good but we will have to be better against Sackville next week,” commented Dragons Head Coach Mike Korecki after the win.  “We need to be game ready even though it’s the first game we, as a team, should be better prepared from top to bottom.”

As for the Wolverines, Kyle Gordon scored the team’s first touchdown in league play.  The Dragons conceded a safety to the new team.  Overall, the Wolverines had 20 rushing yards and 40 passing yards in the game.

“I was extremely impressed by the whole team,” commented Wolverines Head Coach Aaron Evans in his postgame comments. “Two thirds of our team have never played football before and the other third have only played for a couple years each.”

“Kyle Gordon was our player of the game but we had a couple stand outs as well as him. Chris Jameison threw some great blocks and punted well. We have a lot of work to do on both sides of the ball as well as special teams but overall as a head coach I came away impressed by my young team.”

The Lockview Dragons will battle the Sackville High Kingfishers on Saturday September 14th, 2013 at Metropolitan Field.  Kickoff is 3:00pm.  Meanwhile, the West Kings Wolverines will try to score their first league win ever as the team hosts Dr. John Hugh Gillis Royals on Sunday September 15th, 2013 at 1:00pm.


(NOTE:  Player/Game stats and comments were not available at press time).

(twitter: http://twitter.com/vohra_ameeta)

Lead Photo Credit (Sir John A MacDonald Flames):  Mark Kays

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