For the first time since 2000 the Okanagan Sun are CJFL Canadian Bowl champions after a 21-19 victory over the Regina Thunder.
It was a very cold afternoon in Regina, but the Sun was shining in more ways than one. Down 15-7 at the half the Sun came out strong in the third quarter converting two touchdowns including a gutsy 24-yard touchdown pass on a third and two when Dominic Britton connected with Mike O’Shea. It turned out to be the game winning score.
The Thunder actually opened the scoring in the second quarter when running back Ryland Leichert punched the ball in from two yards out. Just three minutes later after a Thunder defensive stop Carter Shewchuk led his club back down the field and capped off the drive with a six-yard touchdown run.
With time winding down in the first half the Sun offence started to change the momentum and drove down the field. On the final snap before halftime Britton found Colby Milleto from six yards out for a touchdown getting the Sun on the board. It would be his only reception of the game.
After conceding a safety the Sun continued that momentum in the third quarter and started to chew up yards with All-Canadian running back Jevon Garwood. At 9:53 of the frame he busted through the line with speed and sprinted to a 53-yard touchdown cutting the Thunder lead to 17-14.
The Sun would take their first lead of the game on the 24-yard touchdown strike to O’Shea. This drive was set up by a Dawon Puk interception at midfield.
From there the Sun defence took over with a pair of massive third down stops late in the fourth quarter. Incredibly they kept the Thunder off the scoreboard in the second half other than two conceded safeties.
All-Canadian Kelon Thomas had an outstanding game with two solo tackles and 1.5 sacks putting pressure on the Thunder offence all game long. Peyton Ryder was also strong with a team high five solo tackles and three assisted stops.
The offence was led by Garwood and his 128 yards on 21 carries and the touchdown. Britton completed 16 passes for 130 yards, finding Milleto and O’Shea for majors. O’Shea finished with a game high five catches for 69 yards.
For the Thunder, it was their only loss of the season. Shewchuk completed 18 passes for 188 yards and Leichert rushed 22 times for 77 yards.
Their defence was led by Stephen Smith who made five tackles and had seven assisted tackles. Matthew Schill was also a factor with four tackles and put pressure on the Sun backfield.
This is the third national title for the Okanagan Sun after winning in 1988 and 2000 and it’s their first ever victory on the Prairies. As a matter of fact, it is just the second time a team from BC has traveled to Saskatchewan and won a game. The other time was in 2008 when the VI Raiders beat the Saskatoon Hilltops.
Following the Canadian Bowl the CJFL awarded the players of the game:
Offensive – Jevon Garwood – 21 carries for 128 yards and a 53-yard touchdown run
Defensive – Dawson Puk – 2 solo tackles, 3 assisted tackles, 1 interception returned for 16 yards
Special Teams – Mike O’Shea – 7 returns for 108 yards
It’s the oldest Canadian football championship will see the Regina Thunder host their second Canadian Bowl since 2013 as they host the Okanagan Sun. The Thunder won that game in 2013 while the Sun are searching for their first title since 2000.
The Canadian Bowl has seen some unbelievable moments and displays of true determination. In 2022 the National Championship game will be held in Regina at Mosaic Stadium for the first since 2013.
The BC Conference won the title last season and will look to make it two in a row for the first time since 2008 and 2009.
A quick glance at the 2022 Canadian Bowl:
Okanagan Sun @ Regina Thunder - Saturday November 12 @ 1:00pm – Mosaic Stadium
Records: Sun 10-0 – Thunder 8-0 – Playoffs Sun 3-0 – Thunder 2-0
Average Points Per Game: Sun 44.8 – Thunder 35.7
Average Points Against: Sun 13.5 – Thunder 16.2
Passing Leaders: Dominic Britton – 122 of 210 for 2086 yards and 24 touchdowns (Sun) – Carter Shewchuk – 157 of 250 for 2351 yards, 18 touchdowns (Thunder)
Rushing Leaders: Jevon Garwood – 115 carries for 920 yards and 9 touchdowns (Sun) – Ryland Leichert – 124 carries for 724 yards and 4 touchdowns (Thunder)
Receiving Leaders: Noah Bymak – 33 receptions for 616 yards and 9 touchdowns (Sun) – Rylan Sokul – 44 receptions for 669 yards and 4 touchdowns (Thunder)
Leadering Tacklers: Peyton Ryder – 36 tackles (Sun) – Stephen Smith – 29 tackles (Thunder)
Sack Leaders: Romareo Reid – 12.5 sacks (Sun) – Reece McCormick – 3 sacks (Thunder)
The Canadian Junior Football League (CJFL) is proud to announce their Outstanding Player Award winners for the 2022 season. The awards were handed out Friday night at the Celebration of Excellence in Regina, SK.
The award winners are:
Gordon Currie Coach of the Year
Scott MacAulay – Regina Thunder – for the second straight season Scott is named the Gordon Currie Coach of the Year after leading his club to a 10-0 record and has his team back in the Canadian Bowl for the first time since 2013.
Offensive Rookie of the Year
Receiver/Returner – Charles Sawi – Saskatoon Hilltops
As a rookie on a storied franchise he carried the ball 25 times for 224 yards and had two touchdowns. He also returned five missed field gaols for 271 yards and one incredible 125 yard touchdown return
Defensive Rookie of the Year
Linebacker Zachary Chaddock – Hamilton Hurricanes
He blasted into the Ontario Conference with 36 tackles, 10 assisted stops, half a sack, had an interception, 2 knockdowns, 2 forced fumbles and had a fumble recovery
Special Teams Player of the Year
Kicker AJ Williamson – London Beefeaters
He booted a CJFL high 19 field goals including his longest of 49 yards and connected on 21 of 22 convert attempts. He also punted the ball 49 times, collecting four singles and averaged 33.6 yards each kick
Larry Wruck Outstanding Defensive Player
Linebacker Konner Johnson – Saskatoon Hilltops
He led the stingiest Prairie Conference defence with 31 tackles, 2 sacks, 5 knockdowns and 4 interceptions
Peter Dalla Riva Outstanding Offensive Player
Quarterback Te Jessie – Westshore Rebels
He led the Rebels offensively completing 169 of 305 passes for 2864 yards and 28 touchdowns
CJFL Past Commissioners Award
OL Kevin Ricard – London Beefeaters
CJFL Stewart MacDonald Executive of the Year
Craig Briere – Prince George Kodiaks
CJFL Life Member
Sue Fournier – Westshore Rebels
Rick Smoke Community Involvement Award
The 114th Canadian Bowl will kick-off Saturday November 12, at 1:00pm at Mosaic Stadium in Regina, SK
Watch the pay per view Canadian Bowl broadcast HERE