The Pitt Meadows Marauders senior boys’ football team notched its first win of the AA regular season in convincing fashion under the lights Friday night, as they knocked off the previously undefeated Rick Hansen Hurricanes by a score of 21-8.
“The kids were excited for our first night game under the lights, and they came out ready to play,” said coach Matt Todd.
While the Hurricanes were able to repeatedly pierce the Marauders’ red zone, just as often Pitt found a way to get the ball back.
Defensive lineman Tanner Hartley set a school record with his end zone interception, which he ran back 100 yards for a touchdown.
Matt Chichka led the Marauders’ linebackers with 10 tackles, while defensive lineman Colton Davies had four sacks. Cole White and Callum Williamson also put in strong performances, helping to anchor the Pitt defence.
With receivers Anthony Gagnon and Zach Nielson out with injuries, the Marauders focussed on their running game on offence.
Hartley led Marauders running backs with 70 yards on offence and a touchdown. Brandon Stewart had 60 yards rushing and a touchdown, while Chichka and Ben Zabierek both had close to 40 yards each.
Quarterback Joe Schuster was a perfect three-for-three on passing, while rushing for more than 30 yards.
“We didn’t do anything too fancy, we just ran the ball and forced turnovers,” said Todd. “To be honest, we didn’t have the ball all that much. But when we did, we held on to it.”
It was a much different story than the week before, when the Marauders lost 36-29 to Robert Bateman on the road after giving up numerous turnovers.
Todd hopes his team can continue its winning ways. The 1-2 Marauders will likely have to win out their remaining two regular season games to advance to the AA Eastern Conference playoffs.
Luckily for the Marauder, both of those games will be at home, under the lights at Pitt Meadows Community Sports Field.
“We had a really good crowd come out on Friday, and that definitely got the guys fired up,” said Todd. “We’re hoping we can get people out for these last few games.”
The Marauders host the Abbotsford Collegiate Panthers this Friday, and Todd said he expects to see a much younger team than the senior-laden team the Panthers fielded last season.
“A lot of their guys graduated, so they’re a pretty young team this year,” he said. “But they have a very strong QB. Hopefully we’ll force him to make some bad decisions.”
Todd said he hopes to have his receivers back in the lineup, which will give the Marauders more options on offence.
“We’d like to mix it up, but we’ll see how it goes,” he said.
The Pitt Meadows Marauders host the Abbotsford Collegiate Panthers this Friday at Pitt Meadows Community Sports Field. Game time is 7:30 p.m.