Top News

Tantramar Titans trounce Greyhounds in season opener

The Titans’ Oliver Longpre (15) put up 218 tough yards in Saturday’s game against the visiting Saint John High Greyhounds. Above Longpre heads for the outside.
The Titans’ Oliver Longpre (15) put up 218 tough yards in Saturday’s game against the visiting Saint John High Greyhounds. Above Longpre heads for the outside. - PAMELA SCHNEIDER

Sackville squad notches 35-7 win over Saint John High

SACKVILLE, N.B. – Scott O’Neal may have breathed a sigh of relief following the Titan’s 35-7 victory over the visiting Saint John High Greyhounds here on Saturday afternoon but he was scratching his head in wonder over some of his team’s play.

“We will definitely have to improve, especially in our aerial game,” he said, referring to the number of times quarterback Justin Vogels had delivered the ball into receivers’ hands only two watch them bobble and drop the pigskin.

Vogels has developed into an outstanding high school signal caller, having been the number one quarterback with Team New Brunswick during the past season and he showed a fresh ability to run the ball but other than Lucas Cormier who caught two of the three completions the others had a case of the dropsies.

But as it turned out they didn’t need a passing game on Saturday as the running game took over. Tailback Oliver Longpre put up 218 tough yards, which included a dandy – a 96-yard sweep as he simply showed blazing speed to outdistance the opposition from his own 14 to the end zone.

The Titans have long been known as an off-tackle offense and they proved it once again, although Longpre found great success by going outside.

The Grade 11 student crossed into enemy territory on three occasions against the Greyhounds, while Vogels surprised fans with a new found speed and put his stamp on this aspect by rolling out for an 18-yard major. Owen O’Neal nailed the other with a nine-yard reception from Vogels.

The Titan victory on Saturday marked the third matchup on the weekend where teams from this end of the province scored victories. Riverview dumped Fredericton and Moncton toppled Leo Hayes.This marked the opening game of the season for both teams in the newly formed seven team conference, which is operating independently of the NBIAA since their rule is that any league must be comprised of at least eight teams. It includes Riverview, Moncton, l’Odyssey, Saint John, Fredericton and Leo Hayes in addition to Tantramar. The remainder of the schools playing football in the province have opted for the 10-man conference.

The Titans host the Riverview Royals this Saturday for a 1 o’clock match and the Royals have recruited well around the city and pose a serious challenge to the Titans’ bid for a fourth New Brunswick championship.

O’Neal says this week of work and film study will be critical if his team is to maintain its edge. Especially, the receivers must show glue-like hands as a diverse attack will be required when they square off against the Guy Messervier team that has set its sights directly on the little school from the edge of the marsh.

The local squad came out for the opener rather flat and fans were wondering for the first 12 minutes if they were seeing the typical hard hitting, efficient machine they have become used to. Fumbles, interceptions and a rash of penalty calls set them on their heels. Early in the second quarter the Greyhounds brought the crowd to silence as they took possession on the Titan 30. Alex Cassidy found the Titan end zone after just 23 seconds into the period.

It was at this time the Titans began to take charge and six minutes later, after the defense had held the visitors on the 13, Longpre took a pitch, found the outside and “that was all she wrote.” From then on the Titan defense, led by Lucas Cormier, and a big line shut down Saint John and they put 21 points up in 24 minutes.

The losers had a short bench and Daniel Bell seldom left the field so by the final quarter he was bushed. As they were unable to complete a pass, the load was carried by Bell who was also their best player on defense.

The win stretched the skein to seven and was the 29th victory in 30 tries since the beginning of the 2015 season – the only loss coming by a single point last year to Riverview. And every player on this team is geared to keep it going for those who got it all going and continued to notch a trio of titles.

Recent Stories