OTTAWA (CIS) – McMaster quarterback Asher Hastings, Ottawa pivot Derek Wendel, Calgary kicker Johnny Mark and the high-scoring Western Mustangs all entered the CIS football record book, Saturday, on the final day of the OUA regular season and the penultimate weekend of Canada West league action.
INDIVIDUAL RECORD: Most touchdown passes in a season
At Hamilton, despite a 46-24 loss to nationally second-ranked Western, Hastings shattered one of the most prestigious and longest-standing single-season records in CIS history. With two touchdown passes against the Mustangs, the Regina native finished the campaign with 31 in eight league games, one more than the previous standard set by three-time Hec Crighton Trophy winner Chris Flynn of Saint Mary’s, who accomplished the feat in seven contests back in 1989.
Hastings, who is in his second season with the Marauders but his first as the team’s starting QB, tied Flynn’s total three minutes and 18 seconds into the fourth quarter with a one-yard toss to Dan Petermann, and took sole possession of the record with 1:54 remaining when he connected on five yards with Dan Vandervoort.
Thanks to his 71.5 completion percentage this fall (203 of 284), the 6-foot-4, 218-pound former CJFL national champion also set a new OUA single-season standard in that category. The previous conference mark of 69.7% had been set two years ago by Western’s Will Finch.
“He’s had a whale of a regular season,” said McMaster head coach Stefan Ptaszek. “Thirty-one touchdown passes, when you consider that it has rained in six of our eight weeks of this season, is something goofy. He is one of the very best pocket passers that the CIS has ever seen, and I hope that people talk about him in CIS corners for many years to come.”
INDIVIDUAL RECORDS: Most passing yards, completions & attempts in a season
At Ottawa, Wendel broke no less than three CIS single-season records in a 45-9 win over visiting Toronto. The fourth-year senior from Belleville, Ont., completed 34 of 46 passes for 564 yards against the Varsity Blues to finish the eight-game schedule with 216 completions in 346 attempts for 3,136 yards. The previous CIS standards were 209 completions (Matt Connell, McGill, 2008), 345 attempts (Jordan Heather, Bishop’s, 2011) and 3,132 yards (Jordan Heather, Bishop’s, 2013).
Wendel’s 564-yard performance is also a new OUA single-game record, bettering the 561 yards amassed by Queen’s Tommy Denison against Western in an OUA semifinal on Nov. 2, 2002. On the CIS list, Wendel’s tally is second only to a mindboggling 627-yard outing by Calgary’s Greg Vavra against Saskatchewan on Oct. 7, 1983.
INDIVIDUAL: Most field goals in a career
At Calgary, Mark kicked three field goals in a 57-7 win over Regina to break a tie with former McMaster great Tyler Crapigna (2010-2014) atop the CIS all-time list. With one conference game left in his brilliant university career, Mark now has 87 successful kicks, three more than the current Saskatchewan Roughrider.
The native of Peterborough, Ont., who was a third-round pick in the 2014 CFL draft, set the new CIS standard against the Rams with a 16-yarder four minutes and 33 seconds into the second quarter. He later split the uprights from 13 yards out 5:09 into the third stanza and from 17 yards out with 3:40 left in the contest.
Mark also continued to rewrite the record book in the scoring category. With 19 points on Saturday, he increased his own CIS career-best total to 516, and set a Canada West single-season mark with 125. The previous Canada West season record of 114 was shared by three players, including Jamie Boreham of Manitoba in 2003, Mark himself in 2012, and current Dino teammate Mercer Timmis in 2013.
TEAM RECORDS: Most points and touchdowns scored in a season
Finally, in the 46-24 road win over McMaster that allowed Western to clinch first place in the OUA standings, the Mustangs became the highest-scoring team in CIS football history. Western finished the regular season with 494 points, breaking the previous single-season mark of 481 set by Laval in 2003, and thanks to six touchdowns against the Marauders, wrapped up league play with 64 majors, two more than the old national standard shared by Laval (2003) and Saint Mary’s (2001).
Also of note, Western’s victory marked head coach Greg Marshall’s 100th career regular season success, including 58 with the Mustangs and 42 with McMaster. With a 100-26-2 conference record, Marshall joins Saskatchewan’s Brian Towriss (161-93-1), Queen’s Pat Sheahan (127-82-1), Laval’s Glen Constantin (103-18) and UBC’s Blake Nill (107-36) as current CIS football head coaches with at least 100 wins in league play.