Elmira District Secondary School’s football program had a banner day Wednesday, as both the junior and senior squads defeated the Bluevale Collegiate Institute Knights on home field.
Senior head coach Steve Karn said the performance is a testament to how much the program has progressed since it was initiated ten years ago.“Now that we’re established, we are right there with the best of the best,” he said, noting a tight 23-13 loss earlier this season to perennial powerhouse Resurrection Catholic Secondary School. “We’ve come a long way. We are very excited this year because we have a good core group of guys. I don’t think too many teams want to play us.”
He continued, “Last year we came in third and made it to the semi (finals) against Jacob Hespeler Secondary School, and they ended up winning it all, and we were right in it with them.
“Interest has always been strong. It’s just now we’ve got kids that are excited because football is a part of the culture. Some of them play for the Preds and Warhawks in town before coming in, because they know we have a football program. And now we have had lots of success. There are guys that have gone on to receive scholarships at the University of Waterloo and things just keep skyrocketing.”
The latest victory pushes the senior Lancers’ record to 3-1 on the season.
“It was a good game overall,” said Karn after the win. “The offence and defence were really clicking today and it’s always nice to beat the other Region of Waterloo schools. Last year was the first time we ever beat (BCI), so it’s two years in a row now. A lot of our veterans stepped up today. Our running backs are big and strong and hard to stop, so we are pretty optimistic.”
It started off quickly, with a long touchdown reception by Grant Kernick from quarterback Jordan Frey. Alex White added a rushing score later in the first quarter and the senior Lancers never looked back, winning 35-10.
White went on to accumulate three TDs on the afternoon, while kicker Josh Kosta was a perfect five for five on each extra point.
The 7-0 victory earlier in the afternoon for the junior Lancers held extra significance, head coach John Swatridge said.
“We went winless last season. We had about an 850 winning percentage before that, and then we went winless. Then we lost the first two games this season. So it was just an unbelievable streak after having several years of success. So this is just awesome because some of these kids are winning for the first time today.”
And they did it the right way, he said.
“They played as a team today. They showed a lot more spirit and intensity. Right before the game in the halls you could feel the energy and intensity. That wasn’t there before the other game, and we had talked about it. Today, they started the chants on their own and you could tell that they were ready to go. You could feel it as soon as we came out to the field.”
The junior Lancers took the lead in the second quarter on a short rushing touchdown by Evan Seip. Kicker Adam Weber added the extra point.
The defence held strong the rest of the way and a rouge by Weber in the fourth quarter sealed the deal.
The Lancers square off against St. David Catholic Secondary School Friday at home, with the junior squad kicking off at 1 p.m. and the seniors at 3 p.m.