Gryphons defeat Western

A strong start and a big finish = a great Gryphon win. Lots of stuff in between that ought to be discussed, but overall, a win that I am quite happy with. If I did have any complaints, numero uno would be the refereeing. You can read all I’m likely to say on that topic here. Regardless, the victory brings our record to 5-1 and assures the program of a home playoff game.

Some quick thoughts:

  • Besides the score, I can think of several interesting parallels between yesterday’s game and our 41-39 Homecoming loss to Western in 2009. Some big momentum swings. Late lead changes. I’ll elaborate if I have time.
  • I don’t recall ever questioning the play-calling before. But in the 2nd half with the ball near mid-field when we tried to run a draw play on first down and a screen pass on second I had to think OC Galloway was trying to play it too safe. I think he may agree based on his self-assessment of his play-calling in the 3rd Q of the Laurier game.
  • It will be hard for the coaches not to name Julian Tropea [5 for 5 on FGs including game winning kick] the Special Teams Player of the Game. But I watched sophomore LB Cam Walker on quite a few P/K coverage plays and I know why he won the award two weeks in a row. Just like I have heard about him, “he just kills guys” & “he’s almost always the first guy down field”. Whether he is busting up the wedge or making the tackle, he is always making a play. Walker also had 2 tackles for loss
  • Speaking of previous Pl-of-G winners, DT Jeff Finley had another big game. I heard the redshirt sophomore’s name frequently. He was credited with four solo tackles, an assist and a sack. LB John Rush led all Gryphon tacklers with 8 solo, 3 assists, plus an interception, the first of his career.
  • Gryphon DBs were 5 of the next 6 leading tacklers – Dunjko [5 solo, 6 assists], Androschuk [5,4], Durigon [6,1], Myers [5,1] & Hutchison [4,2]
  • Guelph gets very good value from their tailback and H-back. Besides the rushing and receiving plays they make, they make big contributions as blockers. Yesterday I watched Rob Farquharson stop rushing UWO d-linemen dead in their tracks. Daniel MacDonald has done the same thing in previous games.
  • MacDonald was lost to an injury on the first offensive play of the game – a 16 yd reception. Jake Reinhart had to fill in as longsnapper. UWO spotters must have been asleep at the switch as I never saw the Stangs make a serious effort to block punts or kicks.

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The Gryphons wore all red uniforms yesterday. This included vintage or “throwback”  jerseys with REDMEN on the chest. These were designed to replicate those worn by the OA-VC Redmen prior to the program becoming the Guelph Gryphons. The football teams of the Ontario Agricultural College/Ontario Veterinarian College played under the Redmen name from 1956 to 1966. Prior to that Guelph teams had been called the Aggies. Dave Hume – a former Redmen player, retired Guelph professor and 1961 Wildman Trophy winner – spoke to the Gryphons at their Friday night team dinner about the history of the program. Without even checking the record books I know that those Redmen teams won several OQIFC Championships.

Dave Hume [Class of ’61] speaks to Gryphons about the program’s history at Friday night’s team dinner

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The opening from the Guelph Mercury’s game story …

This season, it can’t be said that the Guelph Gryphons haven’t learned how to win OUA football games. However, they haven’t displayed the ability to put an opponent away early.

Saturday, the Gryphs needed a 27-yard field goal from Julian Tropea with 18 seconds to go to edge the Western Mustangs 42-39 in a game they led by 26 points at halftime.

“It was a chip shot,” Tropea said. “It feels good just to get back out there and finally beat Western. It wasn’t me that made the kick, it was the whole team.”

The full story: Football Gryphs pull out another last minute win

The London Free Press’ game story: Guelph Gryphons defeat Western Mustangs 42-39 in nail biting …

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