Bantam and JV Spears kick off playoffs with wins
A 32-6 victory over the Oshawa Hawkeyes has propelled the Niagara Spears junior varsity football into the Ontario Summer Football League semifinals.
“There were a lot of penalties in the game and it hurt us but the defence played fantastic and the offence scored when it needed to,” Niagara head coach Brad Martin said. “The defence had four interceptions which is fantastic and offensively Austin MacRae led the way like he usually does.”
Scoring touchdowns for Niagara were: Cam Parlee with a 30-yard TD reception from MacRae; Joe Martinelli with a 25-yard TD grab from MacRae; MacRae with a 35-yard rushing major; and, Braiden Genest with a 15-yard rushing major.
Recording interceptions for the Spears were Carter Small, Sean Northcott, Cole Julian and Marshall Sumbler.
Next up are the Vaughan Rebels this Friday at 8 p.m. at Kiwanis Field in St. Catharines.
“We are watching film on them right now. They played Oakville last week and beat them 25-0,” Martin said.
The Spears know what they need to do to be successful versus the Rebels.
“We have to eliminate the penalties and we have to continue to play good, solid defence like we have been doing,” he said. “Offensively, we have to take advantage of our opponent’s mistakes. Our defence is getting the ball back and we just need to capitalize.”
BANTAM SPEARS 45 JUNIOR ARGOS 6
The Niagara Spears bantam football team advanced to the OSFL semifinals with a 45-6 victory over the Toronto Junior Argos.
“This game was the most complete football game from our team this season. We are playing great complementary football,” Niagara head coach Austin Huh said.
The Spears chalked up 83 yards of passing offence, 298 yards of rushing offence and 16 first downs. Josh Gauslin rushed for 200 yards and Cameron Coleman rushed for 47 yards. Majors were scored by: Gauslin with two on the ground; Hudson Grant and Coleman with singles on the ground; and, Andrew Hurrle and Owen Saunders with receptions.
“Offensively, our strategy was to win the line of scrimmage and ride the strong running of Josh Gauslin, mixed in with timely passing plays this helped us keep the Argo defence honest,” he said. “The offensive line played tremendously creating running lanes for all the running backs.”
Leading the way on defence were: Grant with four solo tackles and two sacks; Will Taylor with a forced fumble, a tackle for a loss and two solo tackles; and, Raph Robinson with a forced fumble.
“Overall we made solid defensive tackles and the defence really rallied to the ball to also make several gang tackles,” Huh said. “Hudson Grant made key, critical tackles in the game.”
Next up for the Spears is a road game in Pickering against the Durham Dolphins.