Photos courtesy of AllSportMedia.ca and Louis Christ Photography
Arguably the most important position on the field is the quarterback and the 112th Canadian Bowl will feature two of the best in the CJFL.
The defending champions seemingly always have a great signal caller. Typically it’s been a pivot that hasn’t seen much playing time in his first three seasons, but in year four and five they flourish after all the reps and practice time they have received.
Since this run of five straight Canadian Bowl titles the Toppers have seen Jared Andreychuk and Jordan Walls pick apart defences, chewing up yards through the air and on the ground.
For Andreychuk he played in four Canadian Bowl games throwing for 1001 yards and nine touchdowns while running for two of them. Walls on the other hand played in two Canadian Bowls in 2017 and 2018 throwing for 439 yards and five touchdowns and running for one.
This season Tyler Hermann has finally had the chance to start and play full time in his fifth and final year. He’s been lucky to see time in two Canadian Bowls backing up Walls and has thrown for 28 yards in those two games. Though it’s been limited the experience on the national stage is invaluable and it showed this regular season. He had the highest completion percentage in the Prairie Conference at 64.1% and threw for 1908 yards and 17 touchdowns on 123 completions. At 6’4 he may not be as agile as Walls or Andreychuk gaining yards on the ground, but he’s able to sit in the pocket and view over top of the trenches to make good decisions. Clearly he made a lot of good decisions. He’ll look to win his fifth Canadian Bowl ring, first as a starter on Saturday November 16th in Langley.
Speaking of veteran quarterbacks Duncan Little has led the Langley Rams the last two seasons and has been simply outstanding and has the Rams in their second straight Canadian Bowl.
This past regular season he finished with the BC Conference’s highest completion percentage at 59.5%, throwing for 1866 yards on 100 completions and 20 touchdowns. Like Hermann, Little is a big body in the pocket standing at 6’3 and 215 pounds and has great field vision.
Last year he became an instant threat in his first season in Langley. He threw for 2611 yards and completed 61% of his passes leading the Rams to the Canadian Bowl in Saskatoon. His experience in the championship game didn’t end in a victory despite throwing for 265 yards and a touchdown, however seeing the Hilltops defence first hand will no doubt better prepare him for this game.
Perhaps the only question is will he play in the Canadian Bowl? He hasn’t played since the Rams second last regular season game and missed the playoffs. Colby Peters has been thrust into action this post season and has got the job done with 282 yards on 18 completions.
One thing is for sure the quarterbacks in the Canadian Bowl will be faced with fast, physical defences that don’t like to give up much, so scoring will no doubt be at a premium. It’ll be fun to watch.
The 112th Canadian Bowl between the Rams and Hilltops will kick-off in Langley on Saturday November 16th at 1:00pm at McLeod Stadium. It’s the third time they have met in this venue and fourth time overall.
The CJFL is proud to announce the Players of the Week from Championship Saturday this past weekend.
Offensive Players of the Week
WR Liam Stewart – Langley Rams
What a time to have his best offensive game of the season! Liam Stewart hauled in three passes for a game high 107 yards, averaging 35.7 yards a catch. He was instrumental keeping the Rams moving in the right direction.
WR Connor Graham – Saskatoon Hilltops
Saturday night the Hilltops cruised to a CJFL semi-final victory behind the play of receiver Connor Graham. He made four receptions for 154 yards and scored three touchdowns. His average reception of 38.5 yards set a new CJFL Interconference record for the highest reception average and his three touchdowns tied the record.
Defensive Players of the Week
DB Kyle Clarot – Langley Rams
The Rams DB continues to add to his achievements this season as he helped lead his team’s defence to another Cullen Cup title. Kyle Clarot finished the BC Conference championship game with two solo tackles, had a knockdown and forced a fumble while locking down the Westshore Rebels’ top receivers.
DL Tristan Hering – Saskatoon Hilltops
The Hilltops defence was outstanding on Saturday night in giving up just one point in London. Tristan Hering was a big reason for that recording three sacks, three tackles and a special teams tackle.
Special Teams Players of the Week
K/WR Will Hughes – Westshore Rebels
During the Cullen Cup Will Hughes accounted for 10 of the 12 points the Rebels would score. He kicked a 28 yard field goal, caught a touchdown pass and kicked the convert. He also tried to flip the field with his seven punts for 262 yards, an average of 37 yards a kick. He added three kick-offs for 174 yards.
K/WR Rylan Kleiter – Saskatoon Hilltops
Another week and another Player of the Week award for Hilltops’ kicker Rylan Kleiter. He booted three field goals and six converts in the national semi-final game. He also got his work done kicking off seven times for 322 yards. He joined the offensive push from the Hilltops and made a 36 yard reception.
Langley Rams 35
Westshore Rebels 12
The BC Conference Cullen Cup game on Saturday was tight for the first three quarters as both teams traded blows and going into halftime the Rams led 9-7.
With the score 15-10 Rams going into the fourth quarter the outcome was still in doubt as both defences were not giving up much. However in the final frame the Rams exploded for 20 points and rode the momentum to their second straight Cullen Cup championship.
Offensively, yards were hard to come by for both teams, especially on the ground. Without starting quarterback Duncan Little available for the Rams they turned to Colby Peters who threw for 200 yards on 12 completions and found Khalik Johnson for a touchdown. Peters also scored on a one-yard touchdown plunge. Liam Stewart hauled in three passes for 107 yards and was named the Cullen Cup Offensive Player of the Game. Meanwhile the BC Conference Offensive Player of the Year running back Andrew Pocrnic didn’t find much room to move gaining 81 yards on 14 carries.
Backup quarterback Tristan Secord-Yanciw saw action and ran for two touchdowns and Maximilian Joseph got in the end zone on a run as well.
Defensively the Rams forced seven turnovers and had three sacks. Colton De Jong was outstanding with a pair of sacks, one tackle and recovered a fumble. The BC Conference Defensive Player of the Year Kyle Clarot was also named the Defensive Player of the Cullen Cup with two tackles, a knockdown and a forced fumble.
The Rebels kept things close with the Rams until the final quarter behind a great defensive effort. They created four turnovers including an interception from Ronan MacSilver and fumble recovery by Bryon Mackinnon in his final CJFL game. Jason Pyper blocked a kick and Leo Ingram and Austin Morgan collected sacks.
Offensively the Rebels didn’t manufacture much. Quarterback Shawn Lal completed just nine passes for 164 yards and found Will Hughes for their lone touchdown. The ground game would only gain 20 yards.
The Rams will now host the Saskatoon Hilltops in the 112th Canadian Bowl in a repeat of last year’s championship game in Saskatchewan. This is the fourth time in eight seasons the Rams and Hilltops meet in the finale with the Hilltops winning the three previous match-ups. This year’s game is set for Saturday November 16 at 1:00pm at McLeod Stadium.