Carlton rides to victory
Crusaders score 22 unanswered points in win over Bedford Road
The Carlton Crusaders are officially in the win column.
The Crusader offence scored 22 unanswered points while the defence produced four second half turnovers on route to a 36-14 victory over the visiting Bedford Road Redhawks on Friday.
The win gives Carlton a 1-3 record on the season, and a boost of confidence heading into the final stretch.
“It wasn’t always how we scripted it at times,” Crusader head coach Lindsay Strachan chuckled after the game. “There’s definitely some things to clean up heading into next week, but it’s definitely nice to get the first one under our belt.”
Friday’s game at Max Clunie Field looked to be over early, when Carlton built a 14-0 lead on the strength of two rushing touchdowns from quarterback Jacques Lavoie. However, Bedford Road rallied for two late first half scores, including a touchdown on the last play of the second quarter, to tie things up heading into halftime.
That would be the lone offensive outburst for the visitors, as the Crusader defence held fast for the rest of the game.
Linebacker Inesh Rai and defensive back Daniel Dupre both recorded interceptions, while Conner Sangret and Owen Davies each recovered a fumble. The turnovers resulted in plenty of prime field position for the Carlton offense, which didn’t hesitate to put it to good use.
Strachan credited the defence with stepping up their play in the second half, especially against the Redhawk passing attack.
“That’s where we were getting hurt— through the air—in the first half. We moved a couple of people around and got a little bit more pressure, which was needed, and we finally had a couple plays on the ball when it was in the air too.”
The Crusaders took the lead for good on their first series of the second half when Lavoie plunged across the goal line on a quarterback sneak for this third rushing touchdown of the game. The extra point was no good, giving Carlton a 20-14 lead.
After a safety made it 22-14 Carlton, Brandon Perreault added another rushing touchdown when he rumbled in from four yards out early in the fourth quarter.
The score remained 29-14 until the final minutes, when Owen Davies iced the game of the Crusaders with a twoyard rushing touchdown.
Although all Carlton touchdowns came along the ground, Strachan said both facets of the offence deserved credit.
“I think one of the big things tonight was just balance,” he said. “I thought we were effective both on the ground and in the air, which is a key for our success.” The Crusaders are back in action on Thursday, Oct. 5 when they take on Mount Royal Collegiate at Max Clunie Field. Game time is 6:30 p.m.
A trio of Carlton Crusader defenders swarms a Bedford Road ball carrier during high school football action at Max Clunie Field on Friday.