12:30 a.m., Aug. 11)
those Myers Riders: Panthers punted from playoffs by crosstown
By Fred Sherwin
Panthers running back Kian Williams is off
to the races on the way to scoring his team's
first touchdown on Saturday. Unfortunately
the Panthers would come up a touchdown short
in a 28-21 loss to the Myers Riders. Fred
Cumberland Panthers will have to wait another year for
a shot at an OVFL championship after the club's bantam
and junior varsity teams lost both of their respective
conference finals on Saturday.
add insult to injury both teams lost to the club's bitter
crosstown rivals, the Myers Riders, who have had the Panthers
number for the past two years.
junior varsity team was hoping to avenge the 36-20 loss
they suffered at the hands of the Riders in last year's
Wettges Conference final, an they had good reason to be
confident after going through the regular season undefeated,
including a 42-39 win over the Riders in Week 8.
confidence was on display for everyone to see at Millennium
Park on Saturday as the Panthers jumped out to a 17-3
first half lead.
the proudful Riders showed why they are the defending
league champions by scoring 20 answered points in the
second half to take 23-17 lead late in the fourth quarter.
Panthers only chance was to pin the Riders deep in their
own end, forcing them to punt, and hopefully ending up
with excellent field position. They accomplished the first
task by not allowing the Riders to pick up a first down
inside their own 10. Rather than pun, however, the Riders
elected to take a safety and had the ball to the Panthers
on their own 35-yard line.
the clock slowed ticked down, Cumberland quickly moved
the ball upfield and with less than 30 seconds to go they
found themselves on the Riders' one-yard line with four
downs at their disposal. But alas, it was not to be, as
the Riders defence rose to the task, stopping the Panthers
on all four attempts.
the Panther players who will be moving up to the senior
varsity division next yeat it was another bitter defeat,
especially in a year when the OVFL championships are being
contested at Carleton University's Keith Harris Stadium.
or unfortunately, they will be able to share their misery
with the Panthers' bantam varsity team who suffered a
slightly less dramatic fate at the hands of the Riders
on the other side town at Minto Field.
bantam final played out exactly the opposite of how the
junior varisty game did. Instead of taking a first half
lead, the bantam team spotted their Rider opponents a
21-0 lead. They did manage to score a touchdown in the
later stages of the first half thanks to a brilliant run
by Kian Williams, but they left enough time on the clock
for the Riders to respond with their fourth major of the
game, and by the end of the first 30 minutes the Panthers
the first half was all Riders, the second half was all
Panthers. The defence finally stopped the Myers' offence
dead in their tracks and the offence resembled the same
offence that had been averaging over 50 points a game.
After touchdowns by Williams, Kevin Nsabua and Noah Gauthie,
the Panthers had made it a one-touchdown game.
28-21 with less than a minute to go, the Panthers had
the ball inside the Riders' 50 and were on the move. They
didn't move it far enough. however, and the Riders ended
up running them out of downs and the game was over.
lone positive the bantam team will be able to take away
from the defeat is the fact that most of their key players
still have a year of bantam eligibility left while the
Riders dynamicduo of Hayden Tripp and Honoreal Iloki will
be moving up to junior.
for the Cumberland Panthers, their attention has already
been turned to the upcoming NCAFA season and the chance
of adding more hardware to their trophy case.
story was made possible thanks to the generous support
of our local business partners.)
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