Spartans top Gryphons; Irish top Patriots
Mike Osborne scored on a three-yard run and threw a pair of touchdown passes to lead the Westlane Spartans to a 24-15 road victory Friday night against the Greater Fort Erie Gryphons in Niagara Region High School Athletic Association senior football action.
Darcy MacIsaac scored on a 35-yard pass and Chase Bowden hauled in a 10-yard scoring strike for the Spartans while Mario Borojevic booted a 28-yard field goal and converted all the touchdowns.
“The game was an all-out war,” Westlane head coach Jason Babony said. “We knew it was going to be a battle and both teams are quite similar in size and skill set. There were bodies and flags all over the field. Players cramping up and limping off.”
Babony thought the key to the victory was his defence’s physicality.
“They set the tone from the get go and didn’t stop all game,” he said. “The O (offence) did a great job answering back, but will need more practice ironing out plays.”
Scoring for the Gryphons were: Ethan Vannatter on a 10-yard pass from Donovan Morgan and a two-point convert on a reception; and, Liam Alcroft returned an interception for a touchdown.
“It was a tough, hard hitting game by both teams,” Fort Erie head coach Dave Sauer said. “We looked good jumping to a 15-0 lead. The late touchdown by Westlane near the end of the half really gave them momentum.”
Things went from bad to worse for Greater Fort Erie on the next play when it lost its starting quarterback to an injury.
“In the second half, we struggled offensively and Westlane played really well defensively,” Sauer said.
He was most disappointed in his squad’s lack of discipline.
“We can’t give teams free yards on personal fouls and that has to change for us if we are going to have success this year,” he said. “We have lots of work (to do) with week to prepare for Grimsby and regroup.”
The game at Fort Erie was played in front of more than 500 people.
“The atmosphere is awesome up there,” Babony said. “It seems like the whole community backs their team and it’s refreshing to see.”
IRISH 25 PATRIOTS 7
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish senior football team opened the defence of its Niagara Catholic Athletic Association title with a 25-7 road victory Friday under the lights against the Saint Paul Patriots.
Scoring for the defending Southern Ontario Secondary Schools Association champions were: Hunter Cropper on an eight-yard TD pass from brother Connor Cropper; Zach Melnyk on a one-yard TD run; Jason Succar with a 70-yard TD run; and, Cole Smith with a 34-yard field goal and three converts.
“I was happy with our defence,” Irish head coach Tim Bisci said. “They played very well, but we really need to work on our offensive line play.
“We are young with a lot of Grade 11s playing skilled positions.”
Bisci is expecting another tough game this week.
“We are going to have to work hard to get our guys coached up for BT,” he said. “We have to start to make plays when we get the opportunities.”
For the Patriots, Jerrell Pappin scored on a one-yard run set up by a 75-yard pass from Devon Cleveland to Matthew Paul.
“Notre Dame’s defence was spectacular with Gerrid Holton putting in an impressive and dominant performance,” Saint Paul assistant coach Mark Antonelli said. “I think Holton is the best player in the entire league and is a game changer.”
The Patriots were hurt by their own mistakes.
“We committed some really bad penalties and need to learn how to deal with adversity which, I think, will come with time this season,” Antonelli said. “Saint Paul had its first night game in more than two years and the atmosphere was electric.
“To be a part if that with the kids and coaches was something special.”
The Patriots were able to use every player in the game which should bode well for the future.
“There is no better opportunity to get such experience and they held their own,” he said.
Thursday: Governor Simcoe (1-0) at Thorold, 1 p.m.; Eden (0-1) at St. Catharines Collegiate (0-1), 3:30 p.m.; Grimsby (0-1) at Greater Fort Erie (0-1); Saint Michael (1-0) at Denis Morris (0-1), 3 p.m.
Friday: Sir Winston Churchill (1-0) at Centennial (0-1), 1:30 p.m.; A.N. Myer (1-0) at Westlane (1-0), 3 p.m.; St. Francis (0-0) at Lakeshore Catholic (1-0), 12:30 p.m.; Blessed Trinity (1-0) at Notre Dame 1-0), 3 p.m.