Gridiron gang fourth in Canada
Football: Three Okotoks players just miss out on podium in Saskatoon
By: Remy Greer
| Posted: Wednesday, Jul 16, 2014 06:00 am
The Football Canada Cup rematch everyone was waiting for came with a twist.
Alberta met three-time defending champion Quebec for the fourth straight year this time with a bronze medal on the line, as La Belle Province reigned supreme 22-19 leaving Okotokians Trey Kellogg, Daylon Creason and Jonathan Leggett inches away from a podium finish in Saskatoon.
“At the beginning of the tournament we thought it was going to be us and Quebec in the gold,” said Kellogg, a slotback with the Foothills Composite Falcons. “Since that didn’t happen obviously our goal was to beat them in the bronze since I don’t think we’ve beat them since the 1990s.
“We really wanted to get that win, we were really close.”
Quebec built an early 17-0 lead on the Wild Rose province with Alberta gradually chipping away and evening the score at 19-19 before the bronze medallists put up a short game winning field goal in the late stages of the July 12 contest.
Alberta opened its tournament in fine form by blowing out New Brunswick by a 76-0 score.
Alberta, coached by Okotoks Junior High School principal Bryan Brandford, missed out on a spot in the final with a 40-32 loss to Saskatchewan-Green. Trailing just 22-14 at half, Alberta gave up 18 points after the break and found itself down 40-14 before surging back with 18 unanswered points to close the contest.
“We were expecting after that New Brunswick game to come in and not have to be at our best,” Kellogg said. “Saskatchewan gave us a really good fight, some of our morale was down, but mid-third quarter we really started to pick it up and if we did that a little bit earlier we would have had that one for sure.”
On the other side of the ball were Okotoks teammates Creason, a safety with the Falcons, and Leggett, a linebacker from Holy Trinity Academy.
“I play safety usually so it was a little different for me,” said Creason, who lined up at cornerback for Alberta. “They didn’t really pass to my side, but I guess that’s because they didn’t want me to pick it off. I had a couple tackles.
“It was way different than high school. A lot more competitive, everybody took it more seriously.”
Highlights for Kellogg included a devastating block versus New Brunswick and a 60-plus yard catch and run from gunslinger Alex Basilis to paydirt versus the hosts from Saskatchewan.
“I had a big crack-back block and I knocked the kid out, obviously you don’t want to hurt anybody, but it was a big block and big momentum shift for us,” said Kellogg. “Then in the second game, it was about a 62-yard touchdown, the only one I had in the tournament.
“Their corner pressed on me so my quarterback gave me the go sign and I was off to the races after that.”
An experience the Falcons duo will take with them as Grade 11 students on the gridiron as Foothills looks to build on its provincial silver medal from 2013.
“We can take leadership back, shore up our skills and teach others and try to get them better,” Creason said. “It’s just the aspect of being on Team Alberta to bring back to them.”
Kellogg echoed the sentiment.
“The tournament as a whole was really fun. Probably one of the best football experiences I’ve ever had in my life,” he said. “Some of the players were really good. I got to see how I matched up against some people. It was good to see how I’m doing so far and what we need to do to get better.”
Ontario would go on to win the gold medal game 27-19 over Saskatchewan-Green.
For more information go to footballCanada.com