Kyle Quinlan (South Woodslee, Ont.) made a statement in his return to the McMaster lineup Thursday night throwing for 455 yards and five touchdowns on 23 of 32 passing in only three quarters of work in the #5 Marauders 50-14 defeat of the Toronto Varsity Blues.
Quinlan moved into a tie for fourth spot on the all-time McMaster career passing touchdowns list with 36 matching McMaster offensive coordinator Jon Behie’s career total. He also took sole possession of fourth spot in career passing yards with a total of 4561. Quinlan also moved to fifth all-time in career completions with 282.
Brad Fochesato (Windsor, Ont.) was Quinlan’s favourite target on the night catching four balls for 172 yards and two touchdowns in the win.
Matt Peressini (Hamilton, Ont.) moved to first in the country in receiving touchdowns with his two scores against Toronto. His two touchdown night also moved him into a tie for top spot in career touchdowns with Vaughan Swart at 19.
Michael DiCroce (Hamilton, Ont.) added 155 yards on seven attempts and had a touchdown of his own in the win.
Running back Chris Pezzetta (Burlington, Ont.) scored the lone rushing touchdown in the ball game. The rookie rushed for 60 yards on eight attempts. James Hill (Hamilton, Ont.) was the top rusher for the Marauders with 89 yards on 15 carries.
McMaster and Toronto would trade drives early in the first before either team would put points on the board. Quinlan would complete passes to DiCroce and Robert Babic (Oakville, Ont.), including a 31-yard gain, in a drive that would end with a 17-yard field goal from Tyler Crapigna (Ottawa, Ont.).
Later in the quarter, the Marauders would strike again. It would begin with a rush from Pezzetta and a pass completion from Quinlan to Peressini before Babic became an intergral part of the drive. Babic would make up 32 yards in the 68 yard drive. Pezzetta would score the first touchdown of the night for the Marauders with a two yard rush.
Toronto would respond with a scoring drive of their own. The Blues would put together a 12 play 75 yard drive that ended with Andrew Gilles (Toronto, Ont.) connecting with receiver Alex Pierzchalski (London, Ont.) for the 1 yard score after Toronto recovered their own blocked field goal attempt that was mishandled by the Marauders on the 1 yard line. The Andrew Lomasney (Toronto, Ont.) extra point would bring Toronto within three with at 10-7.
At the beginning of the second quarter, Pezzetta would gain nine yards rushing before Quinlan rushed for 12 of his own. Another rush from DiCroce before a touchdown completion to Fochesato for 30 yards would complete the drive and give the Marauders their second touchdown of the night.
On the next series, Gillis would complete a 17-yard pass to Sebastian Magalas (Burlington, Ont.) before McMaster gave up 15 yards on a penalty. Another pass completion from Gillis to Paul de Pass (Ajax, Ont.) would be the Blues only other touchdown of the night. Lomasney’s kick attempt would be good for the extra point, bringing the Blues within three at 17-14.
Gillis would finish with 207 yards passing on 18 of 32 attempts with three interceptions. Michael Prempeh (Toronto, Ont.) was his favourite target catching seven balls for 86 yards.
Later in the second quarter with less than three minutes to go, McMaster would put together another long drive from their own ten yard line. After completing passes to Babic and DiCroce for a total of 20 yards, Quinlan would rush for another 19 to get to the McMaster 49 yard line. A rush from James Hill (Hamilton, Ont.) for five would almost put the Marauders in the Blues half before Quinlan threw a 50-yard bomb to Fochesato to setup first and goal at the 6 yard line. Peressini would catch the three yard touchdown pass to end the half with McMaster ahead 26-14.
In the second half, the Marauders would pull away. After an interception from Allan Dicks (Abbotsford, BC) gave the Marauders back the ball, Quinlan connected with Fochesato for a long gain, this time it was for 77 yards and the touchdown.
Later in the third, DiCroce would gain 41 yards for the Marauders and another 13 later in the drive before Peressini scored his second touchdown of the night on a 16-yard pass from Quinlan.
McMaster’s final touchdown drive came at the end of the third quarter. Hill rushed for a total of ten yards to the Toronto 38 yard line before Quinlan completed a pass to DiCroce for a 38-yard major.
The Marauder defense held the Blues scoreless for the remainder of the contest. Aram Eisho (Hamilton, Ont.) led the defense with 8 tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery. Stephen Dennis (Burlington, Ont.) and Shane Beaton (Brampton, Ont.) each had an interception. Tanvir Bhangoo (Brampton, Ont.) and Scott Caterine (Burlington, Ont.) both had sacks.
In the fourth quarter, Crapigna would have another chance at a field goal. The 38-yard attempt was good for the second-year kicker who closed out the scoring in the game for a win of 50-14 over the Toronto Blues.
The Marauders improved to 5-1 on the season with the win and continue their conference schedule next Saturday, October 15 when they travel to Waterloo to face Wilfrid Laurier. The game can be seen live on The Score at 1:00 pm. Toronto falls to 2-4 and they will face first place Western next Saturday.