Peewee Bulldogs two-back Aylin Canning protects the ball under pressure from the Victoria defence during last Sunday’s game at McAdam Park. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

JB Bulldogs keep playoff hopes alive

Peewees’ offensive line a highlight in loss

The junior bantam Cowichan Bulldogs kept their playoff hopes alive with a win at home over the Victoria Renegades last Sunday.

It rained throughout the game at McAdam Park, and the wet and muddy conditions were definitely a factor in the football game, Cowichan head coach Opie Williams confirmed.

Max Lang got the Bulldogs on the board right away, returning the opening kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown, and the Cowichan defence shut down the Renegades’ first offensive foray. On Cowichan’s first offensive possession, Brad MacRae ran the ball 33 yards to get into the red zone, but the Bulldogs were turned back by the Victoria defenders, missing the field goal but still adding a rouge to their point total. The Renegades ran 90 yards on their next possession for a touchdown, but the Bulldogs blocked the extra point, and managed to keep Victoria off the scoreboard for the rest of the afternoon.

Cowichan’s special teams and defensive units had excellent outings, including big punts by MacRae and tackles by Isaac Keepence and Ryder Maertz. Kolten Crook made a big tackle on the one-yard line that helped force the Renegades to concede a safety and kick off. The Bulldogs took an 11-6 lead into halftime.

“We recognized their offence and made changes to shut the door,” Williams said. “And our offence was able to start moving the ball.”

Late in the third quarter, Maertz broke four tackles to score, and MacRae added one more touchdown to the total.

The Bulldogs will play their regular-season finale in Comox this weekend, and need a win or a tie to make the playoffs.

“Comox is just behind us in the standings,” Williams noted. “They are an evenly matched team and it should be an exciting game.”

Earlier on Sunday, the peewee Bulldogs were defeated 20-0 by Victoria. Breakdowns on defence plagued the Bulldogs, leading to big runs by the Renegades’ offence.

“Protecting the outside has been a weak spot on D for us all season,” Cowichan coach Trystan Ryder said. “The Renegades defence’s pass coverage was tight and they were able to intercept us twice.”

The offensive line was a highlight for the Bulldogs, giving quarterback Cruiz Heemskerk time to get off passes and stay on his feet. Centre Brayden Screaton played well in slippery conditions, and was able to control the exchange to Heemskerk. The O line also opened up holes for three-back Atlas Ryder, giving him time and space to go for some good runs.

“Although we were in the red zone multiple times, finishing the drive, which has been a weak point for our offence all season long, came into play again,” coach Ryder noted.

The peewee Bulldogs will also head to Comox this weekend for their season finale.

The bantam Bulldogs had last weekend off and will take their 7-0 record to Comox on Sunday, hoping to finish the regular season unbeaten.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Cowichan junior bantam receiver Ryder Maertz takes on the Victoria Renegades defence during last Sunday’s game. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Cowichan junior bantam receiver Ryder Maertz takes on the Victoria Renegades defence during last Sunday’s game at McAdam Park. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Just Posted

Andrea Rondeau column: Rock slide story reminds us not to take life for granted

We agreed in the newsroom that the whole thing sounds like a scene from a movie.

Plenty of heart and lots to love about ‘The Marvelous Wonderettes’

Music and story fits for the show opening on Valentine’s Day at the Chemainus Theatre

Duncan Christian sweeps to junior B girls basketball banner

Michaela Wall leads Chargers past QMS and Quam

Drivesmart column: Parental consent and control of new drivers

A young person’s brain is not fully matured until the age of 25.

VIDEO: Ottawa wants quick, peaceful resolution to pipeline protests, Trudeau says

The protests have manifested themselves as blockades on different rail lines across the country

B.C. budget expected to stay the course as economic growth moderates

Finance minister said ICBC costs have affected budget

Monday marks one-year anniversary of man missing from Langley

42-year-old B.C. man, Searl Smith, was last seen leaving Langley Memorial Hospital on Feb. 17, 2019

BC Ferries sailings filling up Family Day Monday

More than 20 sailings added between Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen for long weekend

Amtrak warns of delays as railways from Seattle to B.C. blocked by Wet’suwet’en supporters

Coastal GasLink said it’s signed benefits agreements with all 20 elected band councils along pipeline route

Federal emergency group meets on pipeline protests as rail blockades continue

There’s mounting political pressure for Trudeau to put an end to the blockades

VIDEO: Minister reports ‘modest progress’ after blockade talks with First Nation

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say Coastal GasLink does not have authority to go through their lands

B.C. man released from quarantined cruise ship in Japan

Because Spencer Fehrenbacher has American citizenship, he was evacuated by the U.S.

Henrique scores 2 as Ducks soar past Canucks 5-1

Vancouver tumbles out of top spot in Pacific Division

Most Read