Sept 15,2014(ISN) – NEW WESTMINSTER, BC – Week two of the 2014 Canada West football season saw the Manitoba Bisons register an impressive 42-18 win over the upstart Regina Rams at Investors Group Field on Shaw TV last Friday, September 12. On the following day, the Calgary Dinos ruined homecoming weekend at UBC when the defending Hardy Cup champions ran over the Thunderbirds, 59-11. Over in Alberta, the Saskatchewan Huskies escaped with a thrilling 42-41 overtime win versus the Golden Bears.
Andrew Buckley (Calgary), Jonathan Jones (Manitoba), and Alex Christie (Manitoba) have been selected the Canada West Football Players of the Week for their noteworthy performances.
OFFENCE: #8 Andrew Buckley, Quarterback (Calgary)
Despite playing slightly more than half the game, University of Calgary quarterback Andrew Buckley was dominant in his time on the field in Calgary’s 59-11 win over UBC Saturday afternoon in Vancouver.
Buckley, the reigning CIS Russ Jackson Award winner, completed 17 of 24 passes for 322 yards and four touchdowns in the game before giving way to the bench after the second drive of the third quarter. His four TD throws all came in the first half as Calgary built up a huge lead.
Directing the potent Calgary offence, Buckley engineered touchdowns on the first three Dinos drives of the game, moving the ball 74, 90, and 57 yards, respectively as they built up a 21-0 lead. His biggest toss of the day was a 71-yard TD strike to Tyler Ledwos late in the second quarter.
The fourth-year Kinesiology student added 32 rushing yards on two carries in the win.
Playing just the first half in both of Calgary’s wins so far, Buckley sits second in the conference in yards per game at 317.5 and touchdown passes (7).
Buckley will lead the second-ranked Dinos back on the road this weekend as they get set to face the similarly 2-0 Saskatchewan Huskies in a battle for first place in the teams’ lone meeting of the regular season Friday night at Griffths Stadium.
DEFENCE: #4 Jonathan Jones, Defensive Back (Manitoba)
Manitoba Bisons defensive back Jonathan Jones made numerous impactful plays on defence as he racked up a pick six, sack, forced fumble and break-up during the Bisons 42-18 home win over the Regina Rams in week two on Friday, September 12.
The fifth-year player stopped any momentum Regina was trying to generate in the second quarter as they were down 14-2 and around midfield when Jones stepped up and intercepted Rams QB Cayman Shutter and returned the interception for a 52-yard touchdown and snuff out any comeback bid by the visitors.
In addition, Jones was flying around the field as he sacked Shutter for a 12-yard loss and forced a fumble that led to a Manitoba recovery. The Niagara Falls, ON native also had one break-up and three total tackles (two solo) during the victory.
Jones is tied for first in Canada West with one forced fumble, tied for fourth in the conference with one sack and tied for fifth with one-break-up.
SPECIAL TEAMS: #33 Alex Christie, Kick Specialist (Manitoba)
Manitoba Bisons running back/kick specialist Alex Christie made the big play on special teams. It changed the direction of the game in the second quarter and propelled the Bisons to a 42-18 home win over the Regina Rams in week two on Friday, September 12.
The second year player made a key punt block on Rams’ Andrew Fabian as they punted from Regina’s 48 yard line and the ball was recovered on the Rams one yardline and led to an immediate one yard TD on the very next play for the Herd.
At the time, the Bisons were clinging to a 7-2 lead halfway through the second quarter and the blocked kick and ensuing touchdown was the start to 20 consecutive second quarter points by the home side and a 27-2 halftime lead by Manitoba.
Christie added 19 yards on one kickoff return and one tackle on special teams in the victory.
Next up for Manitoba (1-1) is another home game at Investors Group Field during the annual Homecoming Game against the UBC Thunderbirds (0-2). Game time is on Saturday, September 20 at 2 p.m. CT.
Image Credit: University of Calgary Dinos/Jeff Miller, MyToba.Ca/University of Manitoba Bisons