September 23, 2019 Victoria, BC (ISN) – The Midget division Victoria Spartans football team held off a resilient Westside Warrior 2nd half surge to remain undefeated in Vancouver Mainland Football League action at Westhills Stadium Sunday afternoon, both teams battling to a 28-28 draw.
The Spartans returned home to host the Warriors in their home game opener of the fall, 9-man football season after posting a 2-0 record in early season action.
The Spartans would jump out to a dominating 21-7 halftime lead, but have to endure a Westside second half effort that would see the Warriors mount a 21-point comeback to tie the game with less than two minutes remaining.
Westside’s Quinn Greenwoood would hand off to Demetri Patterson to carry the ball from the two-yard line for the game’s opening touchdown in the first quarter of play, but that would be the only scoring the Warriors would see in the first half as the Spartans aggressive defense would get the best of the visitors.
The Spartan’s pivot Kalen Jules would orchestrate first half scoring plays to Carter Price, Jaxon Roorda, and a QB keeper on a near midfield run for a TD before being relieved in the second half by Jake Jenish. The Spartans would enjoy what seemed a comfortable 21-7 lead at the half time intermission, with the game well in hand.
The Spartan’s Jake Jenish relieved Jules to start the second half. Making his presence felt after defensive teammate Kalub LaForet would step in front of an errant Westside pass for a Spartan interception, Jenish would take the keeper from eleven yards out to put his team up comfortably 28-7 early in the third quarter.
For many teams, a twenty-one-point lead would seem insurmountable, however the Westside Warriors would catch the unwary Spartans blinking as they would begin to chip away at the otherwise comfortable Spartan first half lead mid-point through the third quarter.
After a thirty-five-yard catch and run play from Greenwood to Demetri Patterson to put Westside on the Spartan’s fifteen-yard line, the two Warriors would pair up again two plays later as Greenwood would hand off to Patterson, breaking tackles for fifteen yards and the major to score their first points since the opening quarter. A blocked convert attempt by the Spartans would place the score at 28-13.
A fourth quarter Warrior defensive stand would result in a blocked Spartan field goal attempt, picking up the ball to scamper into Spartans territory to set up an eventual TD.
With momentum swaying in Westside’s favour, the Warriors Declan Jaager would benefit from a Greenwood handoff, running the ball out of the backfield to stab the ball across the line to pull their team to within an extra-point conversion of tying the game with three minutes remaining 28-20.
A recovered Warrior onside kick would give Westside a last chance opportunity to tie the game, and that was an opportunity they would not squander. QB Greenwood, marching his team from centre field would find Mountali Denzel near the goal line for the TD, and a toss to Patterson, catching the ball just inside the end zone for the 2-point conversion would cap the Westside Warrior’s impressive comeback bid, snatching the win away from the Victoria Spartans with a 28-28 draw.