By Greg Price
The table has been set for a rematch after the W.R. Myers Rebels football team dispatched the Rundle College Cobras 28-14 in its Tier IV provincial quarterfinal game on the road on Saturday.
“It was kind of fun to get to travel to Calgary for this game. Being a private school, Rundle College have their own artificial turf field, so we knew that at the very least, we’d have good footing to play on. Rundle has been a stalwart at Tier III for the past few years, so we knew we were in for a tough, athletic team,” said Jason Jensen, defensive co-ordinator of the W.R. Myers Rebels.
The Rebels offence was firing on all cylinders as it scored on its first drive of the game. Special teams kept the momentum going with Josh Bekkering managing to pin the Cobras deep on its own three-yard line on the ensuing kick off. The Rebels defence took over, recording the safety and a 9-0 lead.
“It was a perfect way to start the game. After that, they were on their back foot the whole game trying to catch up,” said Adam Hughes, head coach of the W.R. Myers Rebels football team.
“I think they were a little shell shocked at that point, and they simply couldn’t handle our pass rush. After Rundle settled down, we saw the team we were expecting,” added Jensen. “They figured out pretty quickly that their run game wasn’t going to work so well, and they took to a lot of short passes to the outside. Our secondary made them pay.”
Mike Sawatzky and Brett Andrus each had an interception.
“They had some great athletes on that team, and managed to find the endzone twice, with receivers managing to come up with the ball in heavy coverage,” said Jensen. “You know that in a game like this, a team is going to make some plays, so you just have to accept it, and not let it get you down.”
The Rebels continued its aggressiveness in its defence with an effective pass rush with Ashton Werewka getting two quarterback sacks and Andrus, Brady Garner, Corny Howatt, and Scott Loewen each getting one sack apiece.
“We must have hit the quarterback as he was throwing another four or five times as well. It just completely disrupted their passing game from the middle of the third quarter on,” said Jensen.
Ryan Mankow churned out the yards for the Rebels on the ground, gaining 213 yards and scoring two majors. Andrus had 105 yards of offence to go with two touchdowns.
“We feel pretty good about that win, and I’m still not convinced we’ve played our best football. This week, we head back to Willow Creek for a third crack at them, this time in the South Division final, with a trip to the Alberta Bowl on the line,” said Jensen. “The improvement between our first meeting with them, and our second was pretty significant, so I have a good feeling about this one.”
W.R. Myers Rebels travel to Claresholm on Saturday to take on Willow Creek Cobras.