Barons win on last-minute heroics

By Jamie Harkins

September 7, 2017 10:18 AM

Barons running back Nate Zacharias runs the ball downfield with the Vikings defence in full pursuit. Jamie Harkins/Meridian Booster

The Lloydminster Comprehensive High School (LCHS) Barons football team definitely has a flair for the dramatic.

The Barons dominated the North Battleford Comprehensive High School Vikings through the opening 30 minutes of an exhibition match between the two clubs at Armstrong Field on Friday, only to give the advantage right back to their opponents in the second half.

Everything seemed to go the Barons way through the first two quarters as the club built up a sizeable 28-6 lead by halftime, but the tide turned as the third quarter opened with the Vikings fighting back for a 36-35 advantage with two-and-a-half minutes to play.

“Our defence just got lazy,” said Barons linebacker Garret Hatchard.

“We put in our second-string guys and they’re not used to playing the speed of ball that high school is, and so we just got beat a couple of times.
Then we put our starters back in. We were in a slump there and just had to get our boys hyped back up and back out there.”

The Barons offence took control on their own 35-yard line following the Vikings go-ahead marker with quarterback Anton Amundrud connecting with Carter Wall, handing off the ball to Matthew Morin and throwing a dart to Eric Stevens on three successive plays to get the ball just over midfield.

Three more runs by Morin along with a trio of penalties against the Vikings put the Barons one yard away from the end zone with 30 seconds to go in the fourth quarter.

Nate Zacharias then swept around the right end for the touchdown before running in for a two-point convert to put the Barons ahead 43-36.

The Vikings attempted to push the play deep on their ensuing drive only to find Hatchard waiting in the backfield.

“I was watching them and it took them a while in the huddle, so I figured it had to be a trick play,” said Hatchard. “Then the only trick play that I figured they would do was exactly what they did.”

Vikings quarterback Damon Dutton said they were fired up to start the game, but they also had a few kinks that needed working out.

He said the coaching staff addressed their shortcomings at halftime and the team adjusted, enabling them to make a game of it in the second half.

“As soon as the second half started we started on offence,” said Dutton.

“We got a quick score and the defence stepped up and started doing their thing. It was just a great second half.”

Hatchard said the Barons played a mini-scrimmage in late August, but the game against the Vikings would count as their first real exhibition match.

He said they have one more preseason contest in Calgary left to prepare for the Wheatland Football League season opener against the Holy Rosary High School Raiders on Sept. 15.

“We’re a really good team this year,” said Hatchard.

“We have really good skilled players and we have experience all over the board. We have a really strong offence this year, we have some veteran defensive players who know what they’re doing, and it’s going to end up well.”

Share

More News

Rustlers bring down Eagles

Seven months have passed since the Rustlers captured their first Canadian Colleges Athletic Association title, but that long off-season hasn’t diminished the veteran group’s ability to put… more »

'Cats clip Eagles wings

Strong goaltending at one end and a net-front presence at the other led the Lloydminster Bobcats to a needed 2-1 overtime win against the Canmore Eagles at the Centennial Civic Centre on Sunday. more »

Ball drops in Rustlers favour

The Rustlers beat Edmonton’s King’s University Eagles 25-23, 25-20, 25-27 and 25-21 at the Lakeland College gym on Friday. more »

more »