November 7, 2017

WHSFL Bowl Games Preview

This is when champions are crowned and legacies formed.

The Winnipeg High School Football League has reached bowl week, and five champions will be crowned over the next couple of days at Investors Group Field.

Here’s a look at the games:


Oak Park Raiders (5-1) vs. St. Paul’s Crusaders (3-3)

When: Tuesday, November 7th, 5:30 p.m.

The matchup: Oak Park advanced with a 30-22 victory over the Steinbach Sabres while. St. Paul’s engineered an upset of the undefeated and defending champion Vincent Massey Trojans in their semi-final.

The prize: The Home Run Sports Trophy


St. Paul’s Crusaders (7-0) vs. Dakota Lancers (5-2)

When: Thursday, November 9th, 7:30 p.m.

The matchup: The Crusaders just keep rolling, having posted a 7-0 regular season record and then romped through the playoffs with victories over Garden City and then Vincent Massey in last week’s semi-final. St. Paul’s is now 67-2 in the last seven years with four championships, and the two losses coming in title games.

The Lancers, meanwhile, are in the Anavets Bowl for the first time after crushing Sisler 42-0 in their semi-final.

Crusaders to watch:

#7 Brody Lawson, QB: Threw for 1,083 yards this season and 10 TDs.
#82 Michael O’Shea, WR: Led the Crusaders with 334 yards receiving on 18 catches for five TDs.
#32 Nathan Carabarsakis, LB: Topped the St. Paul’s defence with 26 tackles.

Lancers to watch:

#19 Reid Vankoughnett, QB: Finished the year with 654 yards and six passing TDs while rushing for eight more.
#20 Scott Brakel, DB: Finished the regular season with 21 tackles, and a forced fumble.
#33 Noah Paulic, LB: Led the Lancers with 31.5 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble.

The prize: The John Potter Memorial Trophy


Oak Park Raiders (0-6-1) vs. Vincent Massey Vikings (5-2)

When: Thursday, November 9th, 5 p.m.

The match-up: The Raiders dropped down from the Potter Division (AAA) for the playoffs and advanced with a 12-11 nailbiter in a semi-final win over the previously unbeaten Kelvin Clippers.

The Vikings knocked off the St. Paul’s (AA) squad in the semi-final, emerging with a 21-18 victory that featured a late-game goal line stand.

Vikings to watch:

#11 Karanvir Gill, HB: Led the team with three interceptions this year and added 24 tackles.
#43 Braden Cancade, LB: Was all over the field defensively for the Vikins with 49 tackles, two interceptions, two forces fumbles, three fumble recoveries and two touchdowns.
#36 Kale Bercier, DL/OL: Had 34 tackles, two forces fumbles and a fumble recovery for the Vikes.

Raiders to watch:

#14 Eric Rivera-Ospina, LB/RB: Was one of many rushers for the Raiders this year, finishing with 142 yards along the ground and a 12.9-yard average. He also added 25 tackles on defence.
#24 Tristan Lawrence Richards, RB: Rushed for 121 yards
#17 Ben Boyko, Rec: Finished the year with 19 catches and 253 yards.
#10 Owen Gilbert, DB: Paced the Raiders defence with 28 tackles.

The prize: The CTV Bowl


When: Wednesday, November 8th, 5 p.m.

Daniel McIntyre Maroons (7-0) vs Kildonan East Reivers (5-2)

The match-up: The Maroons cruised through the Currie Division (A) with a perfect 7-0 record before edging St. John’s 28-22 in the quarter-final crushing Crocus Plains 45-9 in the semi-final. They are seeking the school’s first football championship since 1978. The Reivers knocked off Portage in their semi-final, building a 34-point lead before winning 40-12.

Maroons to watch:

#11 Kieran Benson, QB: Led the Currie Division with 984 yards passing and 15 TDs.
#13 Ethan Schnerch, Rec: Topped the Currie with 20 catches for 411 yards and seven TDs.
#89 Nathaniel King Wilson, Rec: Finished the year with nine catches for 211 yards and two TDs.
#35 Rig Moulebou, RB/LB: Rushed 53 times for 688 yards and a whopping 11 TDs and added 62 tackles on defence.

Reivers to watch:

#80 Michael Goldenstein, SB: Returned from injury with two games remaining in the year and piled up 10 catches and three TDs.
#8 Deion Nelson, RB: Switched from receiver to running back and led the Reivers with 483 rushing yards and seven TDs.
#50 Terry Blais, DL: Led the Reivers with 33 tackles, adding four sacks, a forced fumble and a block.

The prize: The Centennial Trophy


West Kildonan Wolverines (4-3) vs  St. Norbert Celtics (4-3)

The matchup: The Wolverines were a solid 4-3 in the regular season before edging the Churchill Bulldogs 34-30 in the semi-final. The Celtics, meanwhile, began the year with three straight losses, but are now on a five-winning streak, including last week’s semi-final victory over the Fort Frances Muskies, 24-15.

Wolverines to watch:

#11 Devon Machum, QB: Threw for 521 yards and four TDs this year
#33 Russel Listmayer, RB: The Wolverines ran a balanced attack and Listmayer paced West K with 216 yards.
#12 Nick Birch, LB: Finished the year with 36 tackles and three sacks.

Celtics to watch:

#19 Adam Bockie, #27 Curtis Jungham, QBs: Shared the Celtics passing chores and combined for 778 yards.
#52 Reid Blanco, LB: Stepped up with 36.5 tackles and three sacks.
#23 Charles Gillen, LB/DL: Was busy in the Celtics defence with 24.5 tackles, one interception and four sacks.

The prize: WHSFL Bowl Banner