Queen’s eliminates Laurier in quarterfinal blow out
KINGSTON, Ont — Felix Odum placed his head against the goal post with 2:30 left in the warm-up before the opening kick off, praying for a sign of redemption.
But after trailing 22-0 through two quarters and failing to score again, it was evident this season was done.
A 34-0 final against the No. 6 nationally-ranked Queen’s Gaels finished the sixth-seeded Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks’ season at Richardson Stadium Saturday afternoon.
A 94-yard punt return by Chris Partrician defeated the chances of a Hawk upset, as the Gaels rolled over the tattered, young, injury-ravaged squad.
“They’ve got some real dangerous kids in there,” head coach Gary Jeffries said of the Queen’s squad. “They’ve got all the parts. They’re a good team.”
Laurier failed to gain any tangible opportunity for points during the entire game, failing to come closer than the Queen’s 35-yard line for most of their offensive series.
This marks 18 quarters without a touchdown and 11 quarters without a point, dating back to Laurier’s gruesome 56-3 loss to the Western Mustangs. The Hawks went the entire month of October without scoring a touchdown, with their last major score coming in the 2nd quarter of their Sept. 29 game versus the Guelph Gryphons.
The best offence the Hawks have seen in their three-win season has come from second-year kicker Ronnie Pfeffer, who was sidelined early in the second half after being hit hard following a 31-yard rush off a fake punt. He was diagnosed with a concussion and didn’t return to the game.
“That might have been the play of the game. He made a tremendous play, we just gotta teach him how to slide or something,” Jeffries laughed. “He got knocked out pretty good.”
The Hawks’ loss finishes off a season that included a 3-5 record and another first-round exit from the playoffs, which last year marked the earliest in ten years.
Nine players will likely be graduating from the Laurier team, including all-time leading tackler Mitchell Bosch. Jeffries took a moment to thank his veterans for their committment to the program.
“To the nine guys that probably strapped it on for the last time, I thanked them,” he said. “I thanked them for everything they’ve given us. They’ve given us a great deal.”
Queen’s will play the second-seeded Guelph Gryphons in Guelph next Saturday. Western, who defeated the fifth-seeded Windsor Lancers Saturday afternoon, will play the No. 1 McMaster Marauders in Hamilton later that same day.