OFSAA Football Bowl Recap (Independent Bowl): #CFC50 South Lions meet little resistance in their first bowl appearance since 2001

Feature photo credit: Ryan McCabe

In the most lopsided game of the three day festival, the #CFC50 South Lions showed no mercy versus the #CFC50 McKinnon Park Blue Devils as they cruised to a 64-0 victory in the Independent Bowl.

From the first time South touched the ball, you got a sense that these two teams were not evenly matched as quarterback Ethan Martin followed tremendous blocking on a 75 yard punt return that put the Lions ahead 7-0.

Nick Morello would cap off a long South drive with a 7 yard touchdown run just two minutes later, which left the score at 15-0 heading into the second frame. With no time to waste, Morello added onto the Lions lead just 21 seconds into the quarter on another 7 yard touchdown run, which sparked a scoring outburst that would see the Lions score another 28 points before halftime.

Martin reentered the scene not to long after with another major, this time of the rushing variety after scampering 89 yards to end zone to increase South’s lead to 29-0. The next touchdown may have been the play of the game as Morello took centre stage once again, punting the ball high into the air and chasing it down with tactical precision for the onside recovery. Once he recovered the ball, he bolted to the end zone with the majority of McKinnon Park’s players still wondering what had just happened, giving him his third touchdown on the day. Noah Johns then decided to get in on the action with a 47 yard touchdown run with 1:44 left before halftime, then just for good measure, Martin returned another punt 74 yards for a major to put the Lions ahead 50-0 going into the break.

If it sounds odd for a quarterback to have two punt return touchdowns, well the South coaches don’t disagree with you, but after some lobbying by Martin they finally gave into his wishes,

“Playing quarterback I haven’t returned punts a lot, but coming into this year they finally let me.” Martin says. “I’ve always wanted to and have asked a lot, so it’s been fun.”


Photo credit: Ryan McCabe

Credit must go to South who called off the dogs in the second half, deciding to let their offensive linemen have some fun taking turns carrying the rock. Unfortunately for the Blue Devils, #CFC100 Spencer Nichols is a very athletic offensive linemen, which allowed him to bust through his friends on the line for a 22 yard touchdown run just 34 second into the third quarter. South’s final touchdown would come much later in the game on a 37 yard touchdown run by Richie Selmes, leading to a final score of 64-0.

“Well since 2001, South’s legacy has been let’s move onto next year. “ Nichols explains. “But now that we are finally here and just won an OFSAA title, it’s pretty surreal. I don’t really have any words.”

Despite the final score, the Blue Devils showed great fight in the first quarter with quarterback Connor Carusello leading the offence down the field with the assistance of running back Jacob Smith and receiver Riley Miller, but they were never able to generate points for their efforts. Smith finished the game with 76 yards on 13 carries, Miller racked up 83 yards on 7 receptions, while Carusello finished the game with 131 yards passing.

After ending their season with a bang, I think it’s safe to say that South wanted to make a claim for top spot in the nation, and they certainly didn’t hurt their case with a flawless performance. It’s hard to believe this is the program’s first ever OFSAA title, but it probably won’t be the last with the likes of Martin, Nichols, and 6’4” two way player, Jaden Lattamore, returning next season to try their hand at back-to-back championship runs.


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