Thoughts on the win over Queen’s – part 2

The Negatives:

  • The Gryphons gifted the Golden Gaels with 21 easy points. One big play touchdown from each of the offence, defense and special teams. This team can’t repeat that in a semi-final rematch and expect to win.
  • On Queen’s very first possesion we started them off on our own 45-yd line after a 15-yard No Yards penalty. They had six consecutive positive plays culminating in a TD.
  • Too many two & outs from the offense. 22 first downs is less than I would like to see. If you know my preferences you’ll know that I would like to see the QB carry the ball more than 3 times for 11 yards.
  • We saw several Gryphons injured during the game. None of the injuries looked serious though at least a couple of players did not return to the game. Queen’s definitely had more players go down injured. I’m not sure whether that was a result of hard hitting, poor conditioning or the Gaels were employing the Greg Marshall strategy of having players fake injuries to slow down the Gryphon offense.

The Positives:

  • Wow! Only five total penalties for 54 yards. That is a real breakthrough.
  • The defense gave up only 14 points! Who cares about the yardage. As Pat Sheahan said Guelph has “a bend but don’t break” D. And Sheahan also said DC MacNeill has become more selective about blitzing. It was obvious from the results that MacNeill knew exactly when to pick his moments.
  • Gryphons won the turnover battle 5 to 1.
    Rob Farquharson vs Queen’s
  • Gryphons return game and coverage units outperformed their Queen’s counterparts. The Gael’s fake punt TD being the obvious blemish. A’dre Fraser averaged 21.5 yds on KO returns and 16.8 on punt returns.
  • Daniel Ferraro’s 4th Q punts were all you could ask for. He boomed a 64 yarder through the EZ for a rouge. His next three punts were all inside the Queen’s 20. The Gaels last three drive starts – their own 10, 15 & 14.
  • While our rushing numbers were down, Queen’s had to respect our run game. Queen’s switched up their D a couple of times as soon as we had some successful plays. Rob Farquharson still managed 100 yards – 87 rushing and 13 receiving.
  • Once again Jazz Lindsey spread the ball around hitting 7 different receivers. Carl Trivieri and Dillon Dimitroff were his top targets with 4 catches for 75 yards and 5 catches for 52 yards. For the fifth time this season Jazz didn’t throw an interception and he was only sacked once.
  • Our front 7 were outstanding. They shutdown Ryan Granberg and pressured QB Billy McPhee, even with a 3 or 4 man rush. Eleven players up front recorded stats led by Jake Reinhart, Jeff Finley and Jaryd Baines. Three of the 4 picks were made by LBs.[More on the front 7 below]

    Mac Myers 76 yard interception return
    Photo: Kim Zabawa

  • Our defensive backfield, with the exception of one play, had a very good game. Mac Myers 76 yard interception return for a TD in the 3rd Q was one of the plays of the game.
  • When a couple of starters on defense left the game in the 3rd Q with injuries – Mac LB John Rush and DB Iain Hutchison – the defense didn’t miss a beat. It’s a testament to the depth that this team now has that we had a couple of experienced players in Colin MacDonald and Taylor Palmer to step in to the breach. Tristan Doughlin, a true freshman DB, saw the first game action of his career. He was solid as the dime back in passing situations.

*     *     *

To say the least I was impressed with the play of our defense, particularly the front 7. DE Jordan Thompson got his first start of the 2012 season and came up with a very big effort. Thompson was solid against the run, generated lots of pressure and made 2 big sacks for 23 yards. DT Jeff Finley had another solid game including what I would think may be a career high for him with 4 solo tackles and five assists. He also had a sack and was involved in a TFL. Mike Millar, Cam Thorn and Kalven Seilis all recorded tackles.

Amongst the linebackers Jake Reinhart had a great game. As the Will LB Reinhart now has much more pass coverage responsibility than last year. Repeatedly he took away McPhee’s options on the boundary side of the field. He was part of why Queen’s had to look to their RB so often as an outlet, really their 3rd or 4th option. When they did throw at him he came up with a critical INT. He led the defense in tackles – 5 solo & 4 assists. Jaryd Baines came up nearly as big with 3 solo tackles, 6 assists and an interception.

The complete game stats and box score can be found at the CIS website.

*     *     *

The media links:

Guelph Mercury: Football Gryphs secure second place finish

Kingston Whig-Standard: Gaels suffer crushing defeat at Guelph – I didn’t realize the Gaels sufferred so many injuries. I take back the comparison I made above to Western’s tactics last week. Gryphons secure playoff bye with 33-28 victory over the Queen’s Gaels

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One Response to Thoughts on the win over Queen’s – part 2

  1. Gryphonfootball1 says:

    The coaches are adjusting to the players and vica versa. The chemistry is there … and the talent. As important as the focus is on upcoming games, it’s a key recruiting time too … next season is the year that will tell if the program is heading where Coach Lang wants it to go. For my money, prep for semi final (probably rematch with Gaels) is about mental toughness which is what’s been missing, understandably given youth and confidence building. It starts with taking control and dominating York from beginning to end to keep discipline before bye week which is good for repairs (ie John Rush et al) but has momentum risk as you rightly pointed out. That will add to character shown in comeback and prep for rematch and beyond!

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