Winnipeg, MB – The UBC Thunderbirds (0-3) remain winless on the season, losing 20-10 to the No. 9 ranked Manitoba Bisons (2-1) Saturday afternoon at Investors Group Field in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
The Thunderbirds trailed the entire game, but had their chances, trailing 12-10 at halftime. However, UBC was unable to score any points in the second half, resulting in the 20-10 loss.
Offensively the Thunderbirds struggled out of the gates. On their first five possessions, UBC went two and out three times, fumbled once, and then Alex Morrison dropped what would have been an easy touchdown pass from Carson Williams. Instead the Thunderbirds were forced to punt.
Leading 2-0, the Bisons scored the game’s first major of the afternoon as Kienan LaFrance made a pretty 22-yard touchdown run avoiding a number of would be tacklers to put the home side in front 9-0. That is how things would stand after one quarter of play.
Manitoba extended the lead to 12-0 on a 36-yard field goal from Ryan Jones.
Despite dropping an earlier pass, Morrison ended up being Carson Williams‘ go to guy on Saturday. He made a 40-yard grab taking the Thunderbirds inside the Manitoba five-yard line. That would set up a Terrell Davis four-yard touchdown run, cutting the lead to 12-7 for the Bisons with 4:53 left in the second quarter.
Quinn van Gylswyk, who earlier in the half missed a 38-yard field goal, would make good on his second attempt from the exact same distance to go into halftime down just 12-10.
Despite a number of opportunities the Thunderbirds could not sustain any offensive drives in the second half resulting in van Gylswyk giving up a safety and punting five times.
Jones hit a 40 yard field to increase the Bisons lead to 15-10 early in the third quarter and then UBC would surrender another safety to make it a one touchdown game, 17-10.
Jones would add one more field goal from 19 yards to extend the lead to 20-10.
Williams and the Thunderbirds offence pressed late, but he would be picked off by Tyler Fong in the Bisons red zone and then on their final possession UBC would go three and out to fall to 0-3 on the season.
Williams finished the day 23-38 for 279 yards passing and one interception. His counterpart Jordan Yantz went 12-29 for 149 yards and two interceptions. Bryan Rideout and Jordan Bosa had the interceptions for UBC.
Morrison led all receivers with seven catches for 108 yards, while Brandon Deschamps was the Thunderbirds leading rusher with 37 yards on 13 carries.
Manitoba’s Nic Demski finished the day with 224 yards of total offence (45 rushing yards, 65 receiving yards, 92 punt return yards, and 22 kickoff return yards).
UBC will return home to take on the Alberta Golden Bears next Saturday, September 27 at 2:00 pm at David Sidoo Field at Thunderbird Stadium.