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McMaster opens season with win; Windsor sets school record with 78 points vs. Waterloo
Posted: August 26th, 2013 @ 2:05am
Defending Yates Cup champion McMaster Marauders survived a late first-half scare Sunday on their way to defeating the visiting Ottawa Gee-Gees 51-24 in an Ontario University Athletics football game in Hamilton.
Before a crowd of just over 3,000 on the opening weekend of the season, McMaster scored the first 21 points of the game before the Gee-Gees scored two touchdowns in the final 1:49 of the second quarter. Ian Stewart's major on the final play of the half brought Ottawa to within 21-16 at the intermission.
The Marauders didn't allow Ottawa to score again until just 69 seconds remained in the game.
"To see this locker room deal with adversity today, I was pleased," McMaster coach Stefan Ptaszek said. "We weathered the storm and we played some very good football when it mattered most."
McMaster capped the win with 20 points in the final 10 minutes of the game.
Each team had more than 400 yards of total offence (McMaster 492, Ottawa 427). Quarterback Marshall Ferguson of Kingston led the Marauders, completing 28 of 40 passes for 352 yards and two touchdowns. He also scored two TDs along the ground.
Jimmy Hill rushed 12 times for a career-best 104 yards and a touchdown for McMaster, while Michael DiCroce caught eight passes for 102 yards and a TD.
Rookie quarterback Tyler Filson of Kingston completed his only pass in his first intercollegiate game for McMaster, for a 23-yard gain.
Ottawa QB Aaron Colbon threw the ball 55 times, completing 36 of them for 335 yards and three touchdowns. Stewart, with 10 catches for 89 yards, scored two of them. Colbon also rushed for a team-best 88 yards.
Elsewhere, Austin Kennedy tied his own school record with six touchdown passes as the Windsor Lancers smoked the Waterloo Warriors 78-11, the Western Mustangs spoiled the Toronto Blues' home opener with a 50-14 victory, the Guelph Gryphons held the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks to just 71 yards of total offence in a 21-7 win and the Queen's Golden Gaels whipped the York Lions 52-1.
Playing at Windsor, the Lancers set a school record for points in a game, breaking open a 23-11 contest with three touchdowns in the final two minutes of the first half. Kennedy completed 24 of 28 passes for 335 yards and he also rushed 15 times for 108 yards.
Evan Pszczonak had three of those touchdown catches, part of a six-reception, 102-yard afternoon. Mitch Dender carried 13 times for 11 yards and a touchdown as Windsor gained a whopping 743 yards of total offence.
Quarterback Brian Chris was 10-of-21 for the Warriors, and ran for their only TD.
At Toronto, the Mustangs led 30-7 at halftime en route to the convincing win. Quarterback Will Finch was 23-32 for 306 yards, the bigger part of Western's 605 yards of total offence.
Brian Marshall had seven catches for 160 yards and two touchdowns. His second catch came with just 22 seconds left in the first half, barely a minute after Toronto scored its first touchdown to close to 22-7.
"We expect that he's going to make those big catches for us," Western coach Greg Marshall said. "He's got very, very strong hands. (He made those plays) at a time we needed those big plays from him."
George Johnson had nine catches for 98 yards for Western, while kicker Lirim Hajrullah kicked a pair of field goals and averaged 43 yards per punt. Each team scored on a fumble recovery.
Chris Jugovic was 24-for-39 for the Varsity Blues, for 274 yards.
Rookie John Augustine rushed 16 times for 127 yards for the home team at Guelph, where the Gryphons scored nine points in the second quarter to break a 7-7 tie. Quarterback Jazz Lindsey was 14-for-30 for 117 yards, though he missed the second quarter with an injury. Lindsey threw to Keith Walker for a first-quarter TD while his temporary replacement, Lucas Nangle, scored Guelph's other major late in the first half on a one-yard run.
Felix Odum's 38-yard interception return was the only touchdown for Laurier, which was shutout three times last year and whose offence has now scored just three points in its last four games, dating to the final month of last season.
The Carleton Ravens make their return to university football when they visit the Mustangs in London when the league schedule resumes with five games on Labour Day. In the most significant match, McMaster will visit Queen's while Windsor will try to flex its offensive muscles at Guelph. Elsewhere, Ottawa will visit Waterloo, and Laurier will host Toronto.
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