Crusaders roll over Mount Royal
Carlton uses offensive explosion to down visitors in high school football action
It took a few minutes for the Carlton Crusaders to get rolling on Thursday, but when they did they were practically unstoppable.
The Crusaders torched the visiting Mount Royal Mustangs for eight touchdowns, including four in the second quarter, on route to a 58-13 victory at Max Clunie Field.
After the game, Carlton head coach Lindsay Strachan praised his squad for their ability to fight through some early obstacles.
“The opening drive I think we put the ball on the ground three times, which is a bad game in most cases, let alone a bad drive, but after that we bounced back,” Strachan said. “We put points up on the board, threw the ball well, ran it, and once again we were pretty balanced tonight, which is in our favour.”
After taking an early 2-0 lead on a safety, the Crusaders extended their advantage when quarterback Jacques Lavoie plunged across the goal line for a three-yard rushing touchdown. Lavoie scored his second touchdown of the game a few minutes later, putting the Crusaders up 15-0 after the first quarter.
Mount Royal made a quick comeback early in the second when quarterback Alex Shingoose hit a receiver for a 108yard touchdown pass to make it 15-7. After an 18-yard single made it 16-7 Carlton, the Mustangs struck again for another long touchdown, this one from 74-yards out. A failed extra point attempt left the score 16-13 Crusaders.
The second quarter points would be the last of the game for the visitors, but the home side was just getting started. By the end of the first half, touchdowns from Lavoie, Aiden Zwack, Kael Leachman and Brandon Perreault gave the Crusaders a big 44-13 lead heading into the break.
“I thought the guys responded and did what we had to do, especially since they kind of jumped back into the game all of a sudden out of nowhere,” Strachan said. “Offensively, we just kept putting points up and plugging away.”
After a scoreless third quarter, the Crusaders extended their lead again in the fourth. Ethan Cartier rumbled across the goal line from five yards out before Owen Davies capped off a short drive with another rushing touchdown in the final minutes.
Thursday’s game gave Carlton’s reserve players plenty of game time. Strachan said he was pleased with what he saw.
“That’s the advantage of some of these games. It’s an opportunity to play some of these guys,” Strachan said. “Cody Huntley went in and played quarterback in the second half for us, which hasn’t happened at all this year and did a fine job for us. We moved some o-lineman around and a couple of receivers. That’s our guys learning (and) getting on the field.”
The Crusaders are off until Oct. 12 when they take on the St. Joseph Guardians in their final home game of the 2017 season. Kick-off is 6:30 p.m. at Max Clunie Field.