Guelph defeated the York Lions 39-18 this afternoon. The game itself wasn’t a classic nor did it have any impact on the Gryphon’s playoff prospects but the result was still meaningful. A 7-1 regular season record is certainly the Gryphons best since the creation of the OUAA, and the subsequent OUA, back in 1971. You have to go all the way back to 1958 when the OA-VC Redmen went 8-0 before losing to St FX in the Atlantic Bowl to top that. What is semi-remarkable is that this 7-1 season follows a 2-6 season in 2011.
I said semi-remarkable because several other outstanding Gryphon seasons in the past two decades have followed similar patterns. I’ve pointed out before that the 2007 Gryphon team that hosted the Yates Cup did it after a 2-5-1 campaign in 2006. And the 1996 Yates Cup Championship was won after a 1-5-1 record in 1995. But I have to think that there is no way head coach Stu Lang can’t be a leading candidate for Coach of the Year in the OUA and the CIS. Congratulations to Coach Lang, his staff and, of course, all the players.
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As for the game itself, it was ugly at points. The second quarter in particular. But as they’ve done in each of the past seven games the Gryphons did what they needed to to win. There are some valid reasons for this being a less than stellar effort. The Gryphs did sit out at least a half dozen starters. They dressed five freshman offensive linemen and started three of them. They played the entire 4th Q with four freshmen OLs in the game. Newcomers & backups at several other positions played, contributed and hit the stats sheet. The York website already has a game report up – LIONS END SEASON WITH LOSS TO NO. 5 GRYPHONS.
The CIS website has the box score and complete game stats posted.
Checkout the York version of a Gryphon pregame ritual in this video:
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The next opportunity to see the Gryphons will be in the Yates Cup semifinal – a likely rematch with the Queen’s Golden Gaels. The November 3rd game will be played at Guelph’s Alumni Stadium and televised nationally on TSN. Don’t waste any time buying your tickets. Purchase them now at the Gryphon Box Office.