Gaiters give Redmen the boot in Homecoming game
Matt Burke of Timberlea, N.S., rushed nine times for 92 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Bishop's Gaiters rallied to defeat McGill 26-18 in CIS football before a Homecoming crowd of about 4,000 at Bruce Coulter Field, Saturday.
In was the BU's ninth win in the last 11 meetings between the long-time rivals since they ended a seven-game losing skid to the Redmen in 2005.
The Gaiters trailed 10-1 early in the second quarter but rallied to tie the game at 11-11 heading into halftime and led 19-11 after three. They generated 585 yards of net offence compared to McGill, which had 444 yards.
Quarterback Jordan Heather of Oromocto, N.B., spearheaded the Bishop's attack, completing 24 of 40 passes for 360 yards, one TD and an interception. He hooked up with Montrealer Alexander Fox six times for 66 yards and one TD and also found Geoff Coventry of Orleans, Ont., five times for 127 yards.
For the Redmen, Jonathan Collin earned his first start since suffering a career-threatening knee injury in the 2010 season opener. The 6-foot-4, 220-pound senior from Greenfield Park, Que., was good on 19 of 35 attempts for 257 yards and one TD. He also rushed seven times for 13 yards and a major.
His favourite target was freshman Shaquille Johnson from Toronto, who had a game-high nine receptions for 158 yards and one TD. One of those catches was an 81-yard sprint, all alone, down the right sideline. He appeared to have scored which would have given the Redmen a 17-8 lead midway through the second quarter but conflicting calls by two officials on the play subsequently resulted in Johnson being ruled out of bounds at the three. A voracious Bishop's defence held McGill to only one point on the ensuing series when placekicker Samy Rassy's field-goal attempt from a sharp angle at the 11-yard line was wide to the right. Rassy ended up 1-for-3 on the day, making a 33-yard attempt and missing a 33-yarder.
Mathieu Paquette of Magog, Que., rounded out the scoring for Bishop's with seven points, including a 1-for-3 effort on field-goals, three conversions and a rouge.
The Gaiters, who improved to2-3, leaves them in control of their own playoff lives as they sit in a three-way tie for third-place with Concordia and Sherbrooke. Bishop's holds the tiebreaker over the Stingers and will face the Vert & Or on October 13 in the annual Mayor's Cup contest.
The Redmen, who dropped to 1-4, will now face Gaiters in a must-win rematch, billed as the "Turkey Bowl" on Thursday, Oct. 4 at Percival Molson Stadium.