The Hamilton Hurricanes and Burlington Stampeders saw their 2015 Ontario Football Conference playoff seasons commence on the July 25-26 weekend with the Stampeders advancing two teams to division finals while the Hurricanes have one squad moving on.
Tailback Jordan Lyons was too much for the two-time defending champion Hurricanes as the Stampeders ended Hamilton’s reign with a 33-23 victory. Lyons scampered for 310 yards on 21 rushes that included touchdown runs of 25, 1, 67 and 10 yards. Stamps kicker Adam Precoanin booted a 36-yard field goal and four converts. The Stamps also collected two points on a conceded safety touch.
Bolstering the Stampeders ground attack was Dominic Mandalfino with 23 carries for 105 yards while Matt Orr caught two passes for 55 yards.
For the Hurricanes, pivot Liam Putt was 19 for 35 in the air for 293 yards, including scoring strikes to Tyson Middlemost (15 yards) and Michael Ciavarella (16 yards). Nicholas Baldini had an 11-yard rushing major while kicker Jack Beattie was 2-for-2 on converts and added a 36-yard field goal. Baldini finished the game with 44 rushing yards from six carries.
Clark Adams hauled in five catches for 105 yards.
The Stampeders will now move on to face the Junior Gryphons in Guelph for the South Division crown Aug. 1. When these two squads met July 11 in Guelph, the Griffs were 35-28 winners.
Like the Varsity game, a dominant tailback proved to be the difference for the victors. The defending champion Hurricanes rode Michael Chris Ike’s 30 carries for 307 yards to a 41-24 victory over the Stampeders in Burlington. Chris Ike scored on runs of 7, 1 and 26 yards for Hamilton. Other Hamilton scores came from Savaughn Magnaye Jones, on a 17 yard run, and Oneil Lynch, on a two-yard burst.
Jacob Patten added two field goals from 27 yards out and was good on three converts. Anthony Abele ran in for a two-point convert.]
Dylan Watkins had a 55-yard catch for the ’Canes.
Stamps pivot Kyle Rourke passed for three touchdowns with Noah Griffith catching two of them from 16 and 21 yards away while Michael Lehmann snared a 14-yard pass. Rourke finished the afternoon 23-for-37 for 279 yards and also was intercepted twice.
James Condon hoofed a 26-yard field goal and was successful on his three point after efforts.
The Hurricanes move on to Guelph to take on the undefeated Junior Gryphons Aug. 1 for the South Division title. The Hurricanes will be looking to turn the tables on the Gryphons as Guelph prevailed 31-24 during their regular season encounter.
Josh Munoz continues to lead the Stamps bid for a fourth consecutive Bantam title as Burlington rolled over the Sarnia Sturgeon 43-6.
Munoz toted the ball 16 times for 293 yards and touchdown runs of 9, 1 and 4 yards. Niklas Sadonoja had a pair of two-yard runs while quarterback Daniel Eldridge hooked up with Luke Degannes from 16 yards away. Sebastien Mella was 5-for-5 on converts and Zach Ihasz hooked up with Reid Matthew for a two-point convert.
Dylan Grant plunged in from one yard for the only Sturgeon major. The Stampeders will now host the Forest City Thunderbirds Aug. 2 with the South Division title on the line. The Thunderbirds advanced by outlasting the Twin Cities Predators, 36-33, in their semi-final. The Stamps won the regular season meeting, 41-14, back on June 21.
The Hamilton Hurricanes Bantam Blacks were not successful in their North Division semi-final, losing 27-8 to the Oakville Titans.
Calum Beer led the way for the Titans with a pair of one-yard plunges while Quel Noel tore down the sideline on a 55 yard run and Jordan Bish and Nicolas Huiskamp teamed up on a 45 yard pass and run for a score. Huiskamp also caught a two-point convert and Tommy Gorgenyi kicked a convert for the winners.
Michael Csontos scored the ‘Canes lone major on a 15 yard run which Antonio Bruno converted. Bruno started the game with a 70 yard kickoff rouge for Hamilton.
The Titans move on to face the Huronia Stallions for the North Division title Aug. 1. The Stallions ran over the Halton Crimson Tide, 54-24, in their semi-final.