Photo courtesy of _nixbphotos
The Hamilton Hurricanes are the defending Ontario Conference champs following a perfect regular season in 2018. Their only loss came in the CJFL National Semi-Final game in Langley, BC.
Their offence was extremely potent scoring 42.5 points a game while their defence allowed just seven. In the Ontario Conference post season the Hurricanes outscored their opposition 77-23 in their two wins.
The most noticeable change for the Hurricanes is on top as long-time head coach Jason Hayes stepped down. In 11 seasons with him at the helm the Hurricanes never missed the playoffs, won four Ontario titles and he was named Coach of the Year three times. He amassed a record of 80-30 and is second all-time in wins in Ontario and sixth all-time in CJFL history. Brian Duguay slides into the vacant position and will have big shoes to fill. He’s no stranger to the Hurricanes having been involved for many years.
QB Jake Marquette could be the biggest loss to any team across the CJFL. Last season he was named the CJFL Outstanding Offensive Player after an incredible campaign completing 67% of his passes for 1760 yards and 28 touchdowns.
WR Angus Button was one of Marquette’s favourite targets and one of the most dangerous in 2018. He hauled in 25 receptions for 543 yards and scored eight touchdowns.
OL Kyle Maertens was an absolute force on the line last season. He was named the Conference’s most Outstanding Offensive Lineman and was one of the reasons why Marquette was able to stay in the pocket and survey the field looking for the best option.
What They Need:
Following the graduation of the best offensive player in the CJFL, the Hurricanes are in need of a quarterback. They will hand the starting role over to Ethan Belbeck who was last year’s back-up, learning from Marquette. They are expecting big things from him and are hopeful their offence doesn’t miss much of a beat.
WR Keyshaun Jordan is the reigning CJFL Rookie of the Year and the Hurricanes will look for even more from the sophomore. Last season he made 33 receptions for 753 yards and caught 15 touchdown passes, leading all Ontario receivers.
QB Ethan Belbeck didn’t play much last year backing up Marquette. He is expected to win the starting position coming out of camp and will try and fill up the stats sheet like Marquette before him.
OL James Sides will be counted on to hold the pocket and give Belbeck time to throw the ball down the field.
The Hurricanes will open their title defence on August 17th when they welcome the Ottawa Sooners to Tim Hortons Field.