It won’t be an undefeated season, but hopefully the McMaster football team will have learned a lesson after losing, 38-18, to the Ottawa Gee-Gees on a rainy Saturday (Oct. 25) afternoon in Ottawa. The Gee-Gees were playing for their post-season Ontario University Athletics lives, while the Marauders, having already clinched first-place, were able to give substantial playing time to the entire roster.
The Marauders took the opening kick-off and drove 77 yards down the field, ending with Marshall Ferguson hitting Dan Petermann for an 11-yard touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
After that Marauders’ major, scoring plays from both sides were hard to come by over the first two quarters. The Gee-Gees got three field goals from Lewis Ward, while Tyler Crapigna booted a 39-yarder for the Maroon. The teams exchanged safeties and the score at halftime was 12-11 in favour of McMaster.
Ottawa took advantage of a turnover to grab the lead early in the third quarter, when Khadim Mbaye scooped up a Marauder fumble and returned it for a touchdown to grab an 18-12 lead. The Gee-Gees then bumped the margin up to 25-12 when Ian Stewart scored a 74-yard touchdown on a pass from Derek Wendel. Another field-goal put Ottawa in front 28-12 at the end of the third.
The fourth quarter was played in a steady downpour, which made it tough on both teams. Another field-goal by Ward, his fifth of the game, and a late touchdown completed the scoring for Ottawa. McMaster also scored a late touchdown when Asher Hastings hit Petermann from 39 yards for his second major of the game.
The sense of urgency in the Gee-Gees effort was obvious, while McMaster seemed content to get some game reps for the back-ups.
With the win, Ottawa guaranteed itself a spot in the OUA playoffs.
Prior to the game, the Marauders carried the regimental flag of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders regiment to pay tribute to Hamilton’s Corporal Nathan Cirillo, killed in service to his country in Ottawa earlier in the week.
With the conference schedule now complete, McMaster will have a bye to the OUA semi-finals and will be at home on Saturday, Nov. 8.
Tickets for the playoffs go on sale Monday (Oct. 27) and can be purchased online at marauders.ca