A day after Upper Canada College’s varsity soccer team won the Conference of Independent Schools of Ontario Athletic Association championship, the school’s varsity football team has won its fourth consecutive CISAA title.
The Blues had a 5-1 regular season record and beat Trinity College School 32-16 in a semi-final game at UCC to set up a final against the St. Andrew’s College Saints, which had a 4-2 record and defeated St. Michael’s College School 36-14 in its semi-final match. UCC defeated SAC 15-11 and 8-4 during their two earlier meetings, and the Blues had the home field advantage at the oval for the final.
UCC missed a 30-yard field goal early in the game, but SAC was called for roughing the kicker and the Blues got renewed life with a first down inside the 10-yard line. A five-yard touchdown run by running back Rasheed Tucker and a successful convert put the Blues ahead 7-0.
Defensive back Maxime Barbeau intercepted a SAC pass and the Blues took over at their 46-yard-line on SAC’s subsequent possession, but UCC didn’t score.
UCC got the ball back deep in its zone and couldn’t move it. The team was forced to concede a safety to get better kicking position, making the score 7-2 for the Blues early in the second quarter.
An impressive SAC drive stalled at the UCC 10-yard line, forcing the Saints to kick a field goal, which made the score 7-5 in favour of the Blues.
A great punt return by UCC’s Juwan Edghill gave the Blues the ball at SAC’s 15-yard line with three minutes remaining in the first half. It was immediately followed by an end around touchdown run by wide receiver Josh Archibald that was called back because of a holding penalty. Undaunted, the Blues moved forward again and Tucker scored on a one-yard run with 1:31 remaining in the first half. A successful convert increased UCC’s lead to 14-5.
A bad snap on a subsequent SAC punt resulted in a safety, giving UCC a 16-5 lead just before halftime. But the Blues weren’t finished yet. A touchdown pass from quarterback Jay Williams to Archibald with time running out, followed by a convert, gave UCC a 23-5 lead at halftime.
A seven-minute drive by SAC to open the second half resulted in a touchdown and convert, narrowing UCC’s lead to 23-12. SAC seemed to be increasing its momentum as it drove down the field again, but the Blues’ defence stiffened, forcing a turnover on downs by the Saints.
SAC got the ball back and relied on its ground game for a sustained drive that resulted in a rushing touchdown. A two-point convert reduced UCC’s lead to 23-20 with 9:24 remaining in the fourth quarter.
A long Tucker run contributed to a drive that began inside UCC’s five-yard line and later resulted in a touchdown pass from Williams to Edghill. The convert extended UCC’s lead to 30-20 with 5:48 to go.
SAC marched the ball downfield in an effort to get back in the game, but an impressive drive ended with a fumble on the UCC 23-yard line that was recovered by the Blues. UCC was forced to punt, which gave SAC a last gasp of breath, and the Saints took advantage. A long touchdown pass with five seconds remaining and a made convert reduced SAC’s deficit to three points with just five seconds remaining.
SAC attempted an onside kick that was recovered by UCC at its 43-yard line with two seconds left. Williams took a knee twice to run out the clock and end the game. Final score: UCC 30, SAC 27.