Dual defeats don’t discourage Dinos

By Britany Bingham

The battle of Alberta saw the Dinos defeated 34-20 at the hands of the University of Alberta Golden Bears Sat., Sept. 10. In front of 3,376 fans, the Dinos tried to prove that the previous week’s dismal defeat against the University of Manitoba Bisons was uncharacteristic of what this team is capable of. While the Dinos’ performance improved significantly, they were still unable to attain a victory.

In the first two quarters, fans saw a new side to the Dinos. They were energetic, organised and fired up. They made passes, completed downs and even managed to stomp on a few Bears.

“Our team was definitely more intense this game,” defensive co-captain Scott Thompson explained of his demi-team. “We had more enthusiasm and played a solid game start to finish. With the exception of a few big plays, I think we definitely played considerably better. Expect the defense to continue to improve. We plan on dominating the field.”

Thompson got real physical and crushed Alberta quarterback Darryl Salmon, showing him how hard Dinos can really hit. Salmon was still seeing stars when defensive back Drew Carpenter returned a 41-yard punt late in the second quarter.

This feat not only got fans to their feet cheering, but put the Dinos in excellent field position, resulting in Calgary’s first touchdown of the season. Quarterback Charles Guedo rushed the final seven yards into the end-zone after marching the Dinos 23 yards into the Golden Bear red-zone.

Guedo finished the game with 22 of 33 passes completed for 184 yards and rushed 13 times for 57 yards. By the end of the half, with the score at 10-21 for Alberta, a Dino victory didn’t seem unattainable.

In the second half, fans were wowed by a brilliant execution from running back and kicker Steve Hughes. After missing a bad snap, Hughes picked up the ball, ran 10 yards and still managed to punt the ball 26 yards while being clobbered by three Bears.

Early in the fourth quarter, Dinos fans were, once again, brought to their feet when running back Aneel Brar rushed three yards into the end-zone–bringing a final score of 20-34.

Brar was Calgary’s leading rusher with 12 carries for 94 yards. Joel Ford was our leading receiver with six catches for 36 yards.

“We played better than last week, but it still wasn’t good enough to win. The offense executed our plays better. Still, we have a lot of work to do. We have some issues with our running game but we’re really close to where we want to be,” said Brar. “Our passing game was alright. We didn’t make our big plays though. If we could have made our big plays we probably would have won.”

The offense seems to have finally begun to work together. Guedo was able to relax and show the crowd what a talented quarterback he can be. His offense worked together to make plays and get first downs. Calgary led the game with 21 first downs compared to Alberta’s 15.

An honourable mention must be given to veteran wide receiver Brent Hargreaves. He caught five remarkable passes for 47 yards, putting the Dinos in great field position.

Chris Nagy can also be held responsible for five catches totalling 43 yards.

“I love playing for the Dinos,” the second-year mused. “We’ve had a couple of rough games but I wouldn’t want to be playing for any other team. The last two games have been tough losses, but they’re nothing we can’t bounce back from. This last game alone shows how much we improve in only a week. We were excellent in moving the ball, passing and rushing. The team really stepped it up.”

The Dinos’ defense worked harder and faster this game. While experiencing a few mishaps, they worked together extremely well. They moved collectively covering the ball, hitting receivers harder each play and trying their best to keep Alberta out of scoring position. Linebacker D.J. Wickham once again led the defense in tackles, with an inspiring solo total of 11.

The Dinos are finally at McMahon Stadium Fri., Sept. 16 for their home opener against the Simon Fraser University Clan (0-1). The Dinos will be out for blood, still looking for their first win. The rematch with our provincial rival takes place Sat., Oct. 15 at McMahon.

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