Fab Four makes history, back in national semifinals

Fab Four makes history, back in national semifinals

Photo credit Yan Doublet

OTTAWA (CIS) – History was made on Saturday when Laval, Acadia, McMaster and Calgary all repeated as conference champions to advance to the CIS football semifinals. The same four teams had never made it to the national Bowl games in back-to-back years.

The Uteck and Mitchell Bowls are set for next Saturday, Nov. 17, at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m., respectively. Both will be televised live on TSN and RDS.

The RSEQ champion and second-ranked Rouge et Or (10-1) will host the AUS titlist and No. 9 Axemen (8-1) in the Uteck at TELUS-Université Laval Stadium in Quebec City.

In the Mitchell, the OUA champion and top-ranked McMaster Marauders (10-0) will host the Canada West champ and No. 3 Dinos (9-1) at Ron Joyce Stadium in Hamilton.

Laval, McMaster and Calgary all extended or established record streaks on Saturday.

The Rouge et Or added to their own all-time CIS marks with a 10th consecutive conference title, as well as their 57th win in a row on home turf since 2004. The Marauders won their 20th straight overall game dating back to Week 3 of the 2011 schedule to top Laval’s previous CIS record set from 2004 to 2005. The Dinos became the first team in history to capture five straight Canada West banners.

In last year’s national semifinals, McMaster defeated Acadia 45-21 in the Uteck Bowl (at Acadia), while Laval outscored Calgary 41-10 in the Mitchell (at Calgary). The Marauders then claimed their first-ever Vanier Cup title with a memorable 41-38 overtime win over the Rouge et Or in Vancouver.

RSEQ final (Dunsmore Cup): No. 2 Laval 40, No. 10 Sherbrooke 17


At TELUS-Université Laval Stadium in Quebec City, the Rouge et Or jumped to a 16-0 lead seven minutes into the game and never looked back en route to their 16th straight win over Sherbrooke since the Vert & Or joined the RSEQ league in 2003.

Sherbrooke cut the deficit to 16-10 midway through the second quarter but the locals responded with two quick touchdowns to go into the halftime break with a comfortable 30-10 cushion, to the delight of the capacity crowd of 14,914.

As expected, Laval dominated on the ground with 309 rushing yards to Sherbrooke’s 32. Maxime Boutin, with 119 yards on only six carries, and Guillaume Bourassa, with 19 rushes for 112 yards and a major, both went over the century mark.

Rouge et Or quarterback Tristan Grenon completed 10 of 20 passes for 131 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. He also scored on a pair of one-yard plunges.

For Sherbrooke, the duo of Jérémi Roch and Sébastien Blanchard put up impressive numbers in the losing cause. Roch was 28-of-48 for 306 yards, one score and two picks, while Blanchard caught 12 balls for 182 yards.

AUS final (Loney Bowl): No. 9 Acadia 17, Saint Mary’s 9


At Raymond Field in Wolfville, N.S., the Axemen got all they could handle from Saint Mary’s but a remarkable defensive performance lifted them to their second straight AUS final win over the Huskies, in front of 2,678 fans. Acadia prevailed 39-20 in last year’s Loney Bowl.

Holding on to a slim 10-9 lead with less than seven minutes remaining, the Axemen sealed the win with two late safeties and a 28-yard Ryan Begin field goal with 52 seconds left on the clock.

Amazingly, Acadia’s defence allowed only one passing completion all afternoon, for a loss of five yards. Saint Mary’s finished with 97 yards of total offence and only nine first downs, including three on penalties.

Reigning two-time AUS MVP Kyle Graves was a modest 10-of-24 for 110 yards, one touchdown and one interception but the Axemen received a 181-yard rushing effort from conference rookie of the year Thomas Troop.

Jesse St. James led the way on defence with seven tackles, including 5.5 for losses and a pair of sacks, as well as a fumble recovery. Drew Morris had a game-high 10.5 tackles.

OUA final (Yates Cup): No. 1 McMaster 30, No. 5 Guelph 13

Photo credit Michael P. Hall


At Ron Joyce Stadium in Hamilton, OUA MVP Kyle Quinlan completed 80 per cent of his passes and added a team-high 70 yards on the ground as the Marauders took a 21-3 lead early in the second quarter and cruised to their second straight Yates Cup win, in front of a packed house of 5,427.

Guelph racked up 30 first downs to McMaster’s 20 but was hurt by three interceptions against quarterback Jazz Lindsey, who went 29-of-47 for 319 yards and also rushed four times for 31 yards and a touchdown.

Quinlan didn’t have to be spectacular to lead his troops to victory and was a consistent 16-of-20 for 265 yards, a pair of majors and one pick. Michael DiCroce was his favourite target with seven receptions for 114 yards, while Robert Babic and Tyler Loveday each caught a TD pass.

Shane Beaton was all over the field on defence for the winners with a match-high 10 solo tackles, including three for losses, and a pass breakup.

Canada West final (Hardy Cup): No. 3 Calgary 38, No. 7 Regina 14

Photo credit David Moll


At McMahon Stadium in Calgary, conference MVP Eric Dzwilewski passed for 381 yards and running back Steven Lumbala rushed 22 times for 251 yards as the Dinos broke open a close game in the third quarter en route to their record-setting fifth straight Hardy Cup triumph.

Calgary racked up 658 yards of total offence compared to 335 for Regina, thanks in large part to Dzwilewski and Lumbala but also to Jake Harty, who set a Canada West record for a playoff game with 15 receptions, good for 168 yards. His 15 catches rank second on the CIS post-season list, one short of the national mark.

Dzwilewski completed 33 of 46 passes, including a 35-yard touchdown strike to Richard Snyder, but was intercepted three times. The third-year quarterback added a pair of rushing majors, both from one yard out.

The contest was closer than the final score seems to indicate. Regina took a 14-11 lead midway through the third quarter but Calgary closed out the affair with 27 answered points.

Playing in his final university game, senior pivot Marc Mueller went 26-of-40 for 316 yards, one score and one interception for the Rams. Landon Buch was on the receiving end of seven of his passes and finished with 144 yards.


November 17
13:00 Uteck Bowl: No. 9 Acadia (8-1) at No. 2 Laval (10-1), TSN & RDS
16:00 Mitchell Bowl: No. 3 Calgary (9-1) at No. 1 McMaster (10-0), TSN & RDS

November 23
19:30 48th Vanier Cup: Rogers Centre, Toronto, TSN & RDS

ALL-TIME CIS BOWL RESULTS (Inaugural national semifinals: 1967)

Uteck (Moncton Stadium, Moncton): McMaster 45, Acadia 21
Mitchell (McMahon Stadium, Calgary): Laval 41, Calgary 10

Uteck (PEPS Stadium, Quebec City): Laval 13, Western 11
Mitchell (McMahon Stadium, Calgary): Calgary 35, Saint Mary’s 8

Uteck (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Calgary 38, Saint Mary’s 14
Mitchell (Richardson Stadium, Kingston): Queen’s 33, Laval 30

Uteck (PEPS Stadium, Quebec City): Laval 59, Calgary 10
Mitchell (TD Waterhouse Stadium, London): Western 28, Saint Mary’s 12

Uteck (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 24, Laval 2
Mitchell (Canad Inns Stadium, Winnipeg): Manitoba 52, Western 20

Uteck (PEPS Stadium, Quebec City): Laval 57, Acadia 10
Mitchell (Frank Clair Stadium, Ottawa): Saskatchewan 35, Ottawa 28

Uteck (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Wilfrid Laurier 31, Acadia 10
Mitchell (Griffiths Stadium, Saskatoon): Saskatchewan 29, Laval 27

Uteck (PEPS Stadium, Quebec City): Laval 30, Wilfrid Laurier 11
Mitchell (Griffiths Stadium, Saskatoon): Saskatchewan 31, Saint Mary’s 16

Uteck (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 60, Simon Fraser 9
Mitchell (Ivor Wynne Stadium, Hamilton): Laval 36, McMaster 32

Churchill (Les Prince Field, Hamilton): Saint Mary’s 36, McMaster 25
Mitchell (Percival Molson Memorial Stadium, Montreal): Saskatchewan 22, McGill 0

Churchill (Canad Inns Stadium, Winnipeg): Manitoba 27, McMaster 6
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 48, Laval 8

Churchill (Les Prince Field, Hamilton): Ottawa 20, McMaster 15
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Regina 40, Saint Mary’s 36

Churchill (PEPS Stadium, Quebec City): Laval 27, Saskatchewan 21
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 21, Waterloo 14

Churchill (Griffiths Stadium, Saskatoon): Saskatchewan 33, Western 17
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Concordia 25, Acadia 24

1997 (1)
Churchill (Frank Clair Stadium, Ottawa): Waterloo 1, Ottawa 0
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): UBC 34, Mount Allison 29

Churchill (University Stadium, Waterloo): Saskatchewan 33, Guelph 9
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): StFX 13, Ottawa 5

Churchill (McMahon Stadium, Calgary): Calgary 37, Ottawa 7
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Western 55, Acadia 45 (OT)

Churchill (Coulter Field, Lennoxville, Que.): Western 41, Bishop’s 24
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saskatchewan 35, Saint Mary’s 24

Churchill (SkyDome, Toronto): Toronto 26, Concordia 16
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Calgary 37, Saint Mary’s 23

Churchill (SkyDome, Toronto): Queen’s 23, Guelph 16
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 21, Calgary 11

Churchill (SkyDome, Toronto): Wilfrid Laurier 42, Queen’s 22
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Mount Allison 31, Saskatchewan 14

Churchill (Percival Molson Memorial Stadium, Montreal): Saskatchewan 41, Bishop’s 13
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 31, Western 30

Churchill (Griffiths Stadium, Saskatoon): Saskatchewan 40, Queen’s 10
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Western 38, Saint Mary’s 33

Western (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Calgary 34, Western 15
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 44, Bishop’s 10

Western (Thunderbird Stadium, Vancouver): UBC 33, Wilfrid Laurier 31
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): McGill 30, Saint Mary’s 29

Central (Bishop’s Field, Lennoxville, Que.): UBC 32, Bishop’s 30
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Western 29, Acadia 22

Central (McMahon Stadium, Calgary): Calgary 56, Carleton 14
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Western 34, Mount Allison 3

Central (Alumni Stadium, Guelph): Guelph 12, Calgary 7
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Mount Allison 29, Queen’s 17

1983 (2)
Western (Richardson Stadium, Kingston): Queen’s 22, Toronto 7

Western (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Western 17, Concordia 7
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): UBC 54, StFX 1

Western (Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton): Alberta 32, Western 31
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Acadia 40, Queen’s 14

Western (Commonwealth Stadium, Edmonton): Alberta 14, Western 4
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Ottawa 28, Acadia 8

Yates Cup (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Western 32, Queen’s 14
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Acadia 27, Alberta 3

Western (Empire Stadium, Vancouver): UBC 25, Wilfrid Laurier 16
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Queen’s 32, StFX 10

Forest City (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Western 24, Calgary 22
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Acadia 35, Queen’s 22

Forest City (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Western 30, UBC 8
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Acadia 18, Ottawa 16

Central (Lansdowne Park, Ottawa): Ottawa 45, Windsor 6
Atlantic (Raymond Field, Wolfville, N.S.): Calgary 38, Acadia 13

Central (J.W. Little Stadium, London): Western 41, Saskatchewan 17
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Toronto 45, Saint Mary’s 1

Western (Winnipeg Stadium, Winnipeg): McGill 16, Manitoba 0
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Saint Mary’s 19, Wilfrid Laurier 17

Western (Varsity Stadium, Edmonton): Alberta 58, Loyola 6
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Waterloo Lutheran 50, Saint Mary’s 17

Western (Varsity Stadium, Edmonton): Alberta 53, Bishop’s 2
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Western 44, Saint Mary’s 13

Western (University Stadium, Winnipeg): Manitoba 24, Queen’s 20 (OT)
Atlantic (Huskies Stadium, Halifax): Ottawa 24, UNB 11

Western (University Stadium, Winnipeg): Manitoba 41, Windsor 7
Atlantic (Wanderers Grounds, Halifax): McGill 20, UNB 6

Western (University Stadium, Winnipeg): Queen’s 29, Manitoba 6
Atlantic (Wanderers Grounds, Halifax): Waterloo Lutheran 37, Saint Mary’s 7

1967 (3)
Atlantic (Wanderers Grounds, Halifax): McMaster 7, StFX 0


(1) In 1997, Ottawa beat Waterloo 44-37 but later forfeited the game due to the use of ineligible players (official score: 1-0 Waterloo).

(2) In 1983, the AUAA chose not to participate in a Bowl game as a protest against CIAU. WIFL champion Calgary received a direct berth in the national final.

(3) In 1967, the OQAA voted against any league participation in the Vanier Cup championship game. WIFL champion Alberta received a direct berth in the national final.