June 6 Football Report: Niagara Spears; NRMFA varsity
The Niagara Spears junior varsity football team pushed its Ontario Summer Football League record to 2-1 with a 12-7 victory over the visiting Peterborough Wolverines. Dunstin Dulmage had a strong game on defence for the Spears with a perfectly timed ball-separating hit in the open field to save a first down and an interception while Elijah Ferguson was in the right place all day, recording seven tackles, including one for a loss, and a fumble recovery.
Peterborough was able to slow down the Spears’ passing attack so Niagara turned to its running game led by Jayden Gurzi-MacDonald, who had 21 carries for 157 yards. Centre Nathan Owen had a flawless game with no bad snaps and made it downfield on a punt to record a solo tackle.
The JV Spears are in London this weekend.
The Niagara bantam Spears played a hard-fought game but despite their best efforts they dropped a 58-0 road loss to the Cambridge Lions.
“The Spears will regroup to take on the Burlington Stampeders next and learn from the lessons that this game presented us,” Niagara coach Austin Huh said.
MINOR FOOTBALL VARSITY LEAGUE
The Niagara Regional Minor Football Association launched its varsity football league last week with players from 14 high schools taking part in the action.
“It is looking like football is back and stronger than ever,” NRMFA director Jim Storin said.
In games played, the Niagara Falls Chargers beat the St. Catharines Knights 36-0 and the Welland Fighting Irish defeated the Fort Erie Gryphons 21-14.
CHARGERS 36 KNIGHTS 0
“The Chargers were a much stronger team, however, the Knights showed toughness and never threw in the towel,” Knights coach Storin said.
The Chargers were led by quarterback Thomas Somerville who threw four TD passes, two each to Quinn Johnston and Evan Goforth. Julian Mangiacasale added a rushing major.
For the Knights, Ethan Barrow had an interception and Marcel Salmen defended many passes and had several drive-stopping tackles.
“For a team comprised of kids from nine different high schools, many of whom either have never played a game of football or their first season was last fall and they sat on the bench, they held their own,” Storin said. “We have a lot of work to do but we are positive this will have them ready for their fall high school season and it will raise the bar for high school football. “
IRISH 21 GRYPHONS 14
“It was a close game 0-0 at the half when the Irish opened the second half with two scores to go up 14-0,” Welland coach Jake Baliukas said. “The Fort Erie Gryphons needed that spark and came back with two of their own. The Irish ended with a major in the final two minutes to seal a 21-14 victory.”
Sebastian Worochuck, Brodie Bevelacua and Ben Tsanoff scored for the Fighting Irish. No scorers for the Gryphons were available.
Photo by Stacey Bonar.