Volume 12 Week 5

Wednesday, Jan. 16


Posted Jan. 10

Posted Jan. 9

Updated Feb. 4


Orléans Ward
Matt Luloff

Beacon Hill,
Cyrville Ward
Tim Tierney





Senior Boys Football
Sir Wil vs St. Pat's: Wild ending to crazy game results in tie

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Sir Wilfrid Laurier's Scott Vaughan throws St. Patrick running back Lasceles Lawrence for a loss on third and 10 from the 10-yard line late in the fourth quarter. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The Sir Wilfrid Laurier Lancers were a kick-off away from winning their second game of the season on Wednesday. They had a six point lead and were kicking from their 50-yard line after the St. Patrick Irish had taken an unnecessary roughness penalty for taking liberties with Stephane Kukkonen who was in the process of giving up a safety. .

Having a 15-yrd advantage on the kickoff and with the wind at their back, the Lancers decided to try and kick the ball into the end zone in the hope of scoring a single.

"Normally, we would have kicked it to the left side of the field and forced them into containment," Lancers head coach Eric Kukkonen explained after the game, "but we decided to try and kick it through the end zone."

The kick ended up falling into the hands of Mike Miller who was positioned on the goal line. After fielding the ball, Miller ran to his left, evaded a couple of tackles and then bolted 110 yards down the sideline to tie the score at 16-16.

It didn't help that Jackson Bennett, who normally would have been the safety man on the kick and is arguably the Lancers quickest player, was forced to watch the play from the sideline with an injury.

As improbable as the play was, coming out of the blue as it did, what happened next was even more improbable as the Irish managed to botch the extra point attempt that would have given them the game.

In reality the missed extra point provided the perfect ending to a wild and crazy game that included three missed extra points in all. One for the Lancers and two for the Irish. If any one of them had been made, the tie would have been avoided.

What made the last minute touchdown and the tie even more painful for the Lancers is the fact that their defence made a goal line stand from the one-yard line not once, but twice in a row, on consecutive series late in the fourth quarter..

The Irish got the initial lead early in the second quarter on a touchdown from running back Julien Moore. Their first missed extra point made the score 6-0.

The Lancers responded with a 55-yard touchdown on a pass from Stephane Kukkonen to wide receiver Jim Sandaire who broke free of the initial tackler and ran untouched the rest of the way into the end zone. After Jason Deslauriers made the extra point, Sir Wil enjoyed a brief 7-6 lead.

A botched snap on a punt deep in Lancers territory would lead to a St. Pat's safety and an 8-7 Irish lead at the half.

Sir Will regained the advantage early in the third quarter on a Deslauriers field goal and then Deepak Sharma scored on a play action pass from Kukkonen on third and goal from inside the five to make the score 16-8. Unfortunately, Delsauriers wasn't able to convert the point after attempt which would have given them the game.

As it was, the Lancers were forced to give up a safety with under a minute left that ultimately led to Miller's game tying kickoff return.

Despite the last minute turn of events, Coach Kukkonen was able to put a positive spin on the disappointing result.

"It's a good learning experience, not only for the players, but for us coaches as well. You have to have these types of experiences to grow stronger," said Kukkonen, who readily admitted they won't make the same mistake again. "I guess in hindsight we probably should have squibbed the kick."

The tie leaves the Lancers and the Irish deadlocked in second place in the Tier 2 East Division, one point behind Colonel By who crushed the Garneau Gaulois 56-7 on Thursday.

Because of the late start to the season and the fact that all 12 teams Tier 2 make the playoffs, each team has one game left before the post season begins. The Lancers next game is against Franco Cité, while Colonel By will take on St. Patrick.

The top two teams in each division will get a first round bye making next weeks games very important.

(Posted 11:30 p.m., Oct. 3)


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