Players of the Game
Offense – Michael Fortino
Defense – John Rush
Special Teams – Julian Tropea
As I said yesterday it would be pretty hard for coaches to give anyone other than Tropea the special teams honour. Playing for the first time since 2010 Tropea hit 5 of 5 FGs, including 32, 42 & 27 yarders in the fourth Q. A true clutch performance. Fortino‘s teammates call him the Boss Man because “he can do things other people generally can’t”. He is having a big season. A 5th year receiver he is playing a new position and making his presence felt with more playing time this year. He caught 4 passes for 66 yards & a TD. All Rush did was have another great game, but that is “par for the course” this season. He tallied 8 solo tackles, 3 assists, a tackle-for-loss and his first regular season INT. Rush leads the entire CIS in tackles. All three of these players are former members of the Niagara Spears.
Scout Team Player of the Week: Receiver Amitaj Gill [Clarkson SS, Mississauga]
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Receiver by committee?
In spite of the Gryphons having a good season, no individual receiver is having a BIG year statistically. Guelph’s top receivers based on yardage are ranked #42 [Dillon Dimitroff] and #43 [Michael Fortino] in the CIS. It would seem that not one but 3 or 4 guys have stepped up to replace Jedd Gardner. The game stats versus Western show 8 players making catches including 4 players with 4 catches each – Dimitroff, Fortino, Saxon Lindsey and Carl Trivieri.
The Western game was no exception. Guelph has spread the ball around on a very consistent basis – 8 receivers caught passes vs Laurier, 7 vs UofT, 8 vs Waterloo, 9 vs Windsor. Jazz Lindsey has completed 100 of 168 for 1258 yards and 11 touchdowns with only 4 interceptions. That is only one INT since the opener against McMaster. His passing numbers against Western were pretty much right on his season averages though the 3 passing TDs were a season high. I’m waiting for (expecting) Jazz to have a big game statistically that would come close to his 300+ yard efforts versus UWO & WLU last year. It may come when an opposing defense overcommits to stopping our newly successful running game.
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I noticed that starting DE Kalvin Seilis didn’t play on Saturday. That came as a surprise to me.
I still haven’t heard an explantion for his absence. [Upper body injury. He will be ready for the Queen’s game.] Seilis has shifted to defensive end this year after playing most of last season at the 3-tech DT position. The solid play of Jeff Finley, the improved depth on the interior of the d-line and the increased use of a 3-4 front were likely all factors in the change. With Seilis out the Gryphons seemed to use more 3-4 thus giving Cam Walker more snaps.
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Update: Video highlights from CTV London