A 34-0 win in the Rocky View semifinals has set the stage for a highly-anticipated rematch between the Cochrane High Cobras and George McDougall Mustangs.
The Cochrane Cobras were able to prevent the Croxford Cavaliers from building any momentum in Rocky View semifinal action Friday night under the lights in front of a huge crowd. They took a 16-0 lead into the second half, then continued to stifle any threats thrown their way by the Cavaliers while capitalizing on their opportunities.
"I think we played well," says Cobras head coach Rob McNab. "Like I said to the kids, I think we fell asleep a little in the second quarter, and that's something you can't do. Overall, minimal mistakes as far as penalties, minimal mistakes as far as mental errors, but they've got some good football players, too."
Receiver Jamiesen Adam had a breakout game, making several key catches and blocks in the game. It's the first season for the grade 12 student. He called it an almost surreal night.
"It was great having everyone out here. Everyone played great, and it was an awesome team to play against. I wish every night could be like this."
It will be a night to remember second-year linebacker Joshua Vaillant, who tackled quarterback Will Bagnall deep in Croxford's zone to kill a drive.
"It was such an awesome feeling, my first sack playing," says Vaillant. "I'm very gratified with how our coaches teach us this stuff very well, and it's just awesome to play."
Both agree there's nothing quite like the experience of playing in front of our huge cheering crowd under the lights on a Friday night on their new turf after spending all of last season across town at the SLS Legacy Sports Field.
The Cavaliers picked up the pieces from a slow start that was injury-plagued to win their last three games to finish 3-3 and third overall.
"We had some adversity initially," says head coach Josiah Donahue. "It was a rebuild to get us back to third place."
"It was a tough loss tonight but for us, the future is so bright. We have a game against Springbank next week and whoever wins plays in provincials the following week. So, we still have life in the game. We still have an opportunity to make up for it, so we're excited for the opportunity."
In the other semifinal matchup, the Mustangs beat the Springbank Phoenix, 55-20, to punch their ticket into Rocky View's gold medal game.
The Phoenix and Cavaliers will battle for the bronze medal to kick off Championship on Saturday (Oct. 28) at noon on Ed Eggerer Field in Airdrie.
Meanwhile, the Bow Valley Bobcats host the Bert Church Chargers on Oct. 26 at 4 p.m. to kick off the consolation playoffs. They host the Chestermere Lakers on Nov. 2.
The Cobras remain fourth in the latest Tier II high school football rankings of Football Alberta behind the HTA Knights, Grande Prairie's St. Joseph's, and the top-ranked Chinook Coyotes of Lethbridge.
The Mustangs notched up a spot to fourth in Tier 1. That spot was previously held by the St. Francis Browns, who tumbled to seventh after suffering a 51-14 loss to Ernest Manning.