WASH JERSEYs & PANTS INSIDE OUT - NO HOT WATER
The Ticats endured the six hour drive to Ottawa in an attempt to extend their winning streak to three in preparation for a Divisional Week 5 battle with first place London Mustangs. With traffic issues and a scaled down warm up the tightness of legs and stiffness from a cramped bus ride showed in the first quarter. The Ticats relied on two safetys and a field goal by Max Capriotti to go up 7-0 at the quarters end. The lethargic Ticats woke up in the second quarter with multiple scores including TDs form DE Pachiocco, WR Patten and RB Gyimah. The Cats went in at halftime 29-7. In the second half the offence kept rolling with two TDs form RB Anderson and a long Interception TD from LB/DB Jaxon Ciarilo-Brown. At the end whistle, the Cats stepped off Millenium Field with a 53-20 victory. Key stats from the game included a season high 337yds rushing with an average 10.2 per carry three Defensive Interceptions by Bourdage, DiPIetro and Brown, while Max Sherwood averaged 41 yards per punt. "It was a good test for us" commented Underhill. "We were able to overcome some less than ideal situations and have continued success. Everybody got into the game and were able to be a part of the victory. I was extremely impressed with the play of the OLine and Receivers who were relentless in their blocking and allowed the RBs to get yardage up field. Our OLine and Receiver group are truly unselfish players - I couldnt be more impressed". The Victory will be short lived as the Cats gear up for the battle this Friday at Mcmaster versus the undefeated London Mustangs.
WEDNESDAY PRACTICE = 8PM START!
Played at WILFRID LAURIER & MCMASTER UNIVERSITY. Rob coaches Team Ontario & Team Canada as well Special Teams Coordinator and DB Coach at MCMASTER UNIVERSITY. Rob is NCCP Instructor & Evaluator. Rob has won Championships at the, Provincial, National & CIS Levels.
The Varsity Tigercats stepped on the bus and journeyed to Windsor University, for a battle against the Essex Ravens.
As per the norm - Hamilton came out sluggish and unfocussed. They traded numerous possessions with the Essex Ravens in what appeared to be a sloppy and poorly executed first half. The Ravens went into the dressing room at halftime with an 11-7 lead. The third quarter was similar to the first two and Hamilton continued to be bitten by penalties and missed assignments. Essex took a deep strike to the endzone to go up 18-11 and later add a FG to extend their lead to 21-13. The game began to take a turn. With less than 2 minutes remaining in the game the cats orchestrated a drive from their own 35 and with only 52 seconds remaining QB Jordan Rimac found Savaughn Magnaye -Jones in the endzone to close the gap to 2. An unsuccessful 2pt conversion had appeared to seal the Cats fate in the final seconds of the game. WR/Kicker Jacob Patten performed an onside quick which was recovered by veteran Joe Dilabbio and the cats retained possession at mid field. With only seconds left on the clock the Ticat offense did a great job of hitting numerous receivers along the sidelines and with 11 seconds left onn the clock Rimac hit Tyler Major in the endzone on 25 yard pass and the Tigercats held on to win. "It was an important win and I was proud of the team" commented Underhill. "Time and time again we prove we can battle through adversity. Moving forward we need to be more consistent and make things easier for us. The fundamentals are still our mainstay" The Cats will face off against Niagara this Saturday.
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The Ticats travelled to Wilfrid Laurier University for a battle of 1-1 teams against the formidable Cambridge Lions. The Cats struck first on a Brian Dowling 40 yard Pick 6, for a 7-0 lead. The defence played bend but don't break and were able to shut out Cambridge forcing two safeties ending the first half 14-0. The third quarter saw the Cats sputter both offensively and defensively including a a blocked field goal resulting in a Cambridge TD and 21 unanswered points, putting the cats behind 21-14 going into the third. Once again the Cats proved that they can rally from behind and at the mid quarter point phenom Jacob Patton returned a Cambridge punt 78 yards for the score and to tie the game. After a few changes of possession Cats QB Jordan Rimac orchestrated another late quarter drive. RB Almicar Polk and Levar Anderson earned tough yards down the field and Rimac found WR Randazzo in the endzone for a 15 yard score. With a 28-21 lead the Cats relied heavily on the front 4 who had the Cambridge QB scrambling on the majority of snaps. LB Jaxon Brown chipped in with an interception. "The parody in the league is great" commented Underhill. " Cambridge is a great team and organization. Our boys continuing ability to comeback in the fourth quarter is definitly an asset, however, we cant expect to be as fortunate week in and week out".
The underdog Ticats stepped on to the field at McMaster University, under the Friday Night lights, in hopes of getting their first win of the season against the 1-0 Guelph Gryphons. The Cats pivot Jordan Rimac once again managed a game to near perfection this time using his legs to rack up valuable yards and first downs the Cats went into the dressing room 17-13 at half time. The second half was similar to the first with the Cats holding a 6 point lead with just over 2 minutes remaining in the contest. Hamilton punted the ball to Guelph and Guelph was able to return the ball the distance to go up by 1 with less than 2 minutes to go. Rimac made smart decisions and was able tomake good use of RB Anderson, REC Magnaye-Jones, Wilkins, Patten and Kelly befor calling his own number and storming across the goaline for the game winning score with less than 25 seconds remaining. The Cats finished the game on a Jacob Patten Interception and found their 2017 winning ways. Running backs Anderson, Polk, Gymiah and Kelly all worked hard for yards and the Oline did a better job this week with protections. The Defence was night and day from the previous week only giving up 251yds in total offence and 1 score. Kudos to the DLine who battled all night long and to Jaxon Ciraolo-Brown who has an interception and led the team with 5 tackles. The only dark spot was the special teams unit who gave up 2 return TDs. " I was proud of the whole team" commented Underhill. "We need to build on this success. If we want to have a chance to compete in the playoffs we have to be more consistent in all three facets of the game. The wanting to win is there.. figuring out how to get there will take time".
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Among the distractions of graduations and proms, the Tigercats squared off against the undefeated London Mustangs at McMaster University Field. The Mustangs capitalized quickly catching the Tigercats secondary sleeping on the first two pass plays from scrimmage; both for over 50 yard TD receptions and within 5 minutes of the game London had a 15-0 Lead. The cats defence where able to settle down and scored a field goal to go into the half down 15-3. The defence played the second half with the expected intensity of normal. The third quarter was fruitful, with FS Anthony Abele intercepting the ball and carrying it 50+yards to pay dirt to narrow the gap to 15-9. However the Ticats offence struggled and were stopped twice on third down including a 3rd and 1 on the mustangs 1 yard line. when the final whistle blew the Mustangs managed to hold off the cats 18-9 and increase their first place gap in the division. "I was upset with the Secondary performance early in the game, but was proud of how they finished commented Underhill". "We can't afford to give away big plays to any team in this league. The Defensive front played well but we need to to be exceptional at all facets. The offence has seen better games. The end game is that we need to score to be competitive. There will definitly be pressure on them to perform next week".