Yorkton off to a winning start in MJ league

Matthew Gourlie
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Raiders down Vanier 29-8 in high school football action

Yorkton running back Zach Kais, right, looks for daylight while Vanier's Rylan Blacklaws tries to make the tackle.

The Yorkton Raiders needed GPS to find Gutheridge Field Saturday.

They didn’t have as much trouble finding their first win in the Moose Jaw High School Football League.

The Raiders prevailed 29-8 over the Vanier Vikings to win their MJHSFL debut.

“We didn’t know what to expect. We didn’t even know where the field was,” said Yorkton head coach Roby Sharpe. “It’s nice to win our first game.

“We didn’t know anything about them. We hadn’t seen any film. But they didn’t know anything about us either, I’m sure.”

Vanier had a chance to get on the board first, but failed to connect on a third down gamble on the Yorkton 10 yard line.

The Raiders opened the scoring when quarterback Dalton Fichtner found Layne Hull on a 10-yard touchdown pass with eight seconds left in the half.

After a tight, defensive first 24 minutes, the bigger, older Raiders began to take control in the second half.

“It was evident that fatigue was starting to set in to some degree. They started to gain a physical edge and subsequently a psychological edge on us,” said Vanier coach Doug Panko.

“Every football program is cyclical and we’ll use this as a building block.”

The Vikings are the defending league champions, but turned over a lot of players in key positions.

“You’re seeing our youthfulness,” said Panko. “There are a lot of new kids in a lot of new positions. We have a lot of teaching to do. We have a lot of coaching to do and a lot of learning, but we’re going to be fine.”

Zach Kais scored on a pair of three-yard runs for the Raiders to give them a 21-0 lead.

Matt Morris scored a 65-yard touchdown after he took the pass from Haydenn Teriann and weaved through the Yorkton defence.

Hull caught a 14-yard pass from Fichtner to restore the Raiders 21-point lead before a kickoff single rounded out the scoring.

Organizations: Yorkton Raiders, Moose Jaw High School Football League.The Raiders, Yorkton 10 Vikings

Geographic location: Yorkton

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