A hard fought battle didn’t go in the St. Mary Marauders favour on Friday night in Saskatoon, as they lost a 38-28 affair to the Aden Bowman Bears in the Saskatoon Secondary Schools Athletic Directorate Division II title game.
“There were a couple of bounces that just didn’t go our way in the fourth quarter,” Marauders head coach Curt Hundeby said. “We made a couple of good defensive plays to force fumbles but Aden Bowman was able to get one of them back and the refs ruled that their player was down before the ball came out on the other one.
“We also had a couple of passes picked off, one of which bounced off our wide receiver’s hands and the other one came on a play where we thought a pass interference penalty should have been called. We had our chances, but it’s tough to lose a game like that when it could have gone either way.”
Friday’s contest was the second of the season between the two sides, as the Bears picked up a 42-24 win over the Marauders in the opening game of the year for both teams at Max Clunie Field on Sept. 6.
“I thought the games were similar but one of the differences was that they got two of their big scoring plays on the ground instead of through the air like they did in the opener,” Hundeby said.
“We struggled running the ball at times on Friday, but I thought we did a great job of moving down the field with our passing game.”
The Marauders, who finished the year with a 3-5-1 record, will have several key players returning to the roster in 2020.
However, they will be losing their starting quarterback as Kyle Witkowski is set to graduate from the program.
“He led the league in passing yards for the last two seasons, so that will be a big spot to try and fill on our roster next fall,” Hundeby said.
“We will lose some key guys on our offensive and defensive lines, but we will be returning a number of starters on both sides of the ball. It’s up to us as coaches to make the pieces fit as best we can.”
The Holy Cross Crusaders won the SSSAD 6A title on Friday with a 33-9 win over the St. Joseph Chargers and will now take on the LeBoldus Golden Suns in next week’s 6A provincial title game at Mosaic Stadium next Saturday
The Golden Suns captured the Regina 6A crown with a 22-8 triumph over the Riffel Royals on Friday.
Meanwhile, the SSSAD 5A champion Bishop James Mahoney Saints advanced to the provincial final with a 14-2 victory over the Regina league champion Balgonie Greenall Griffins during a semifinal contest in Saskatoon Saturday.
The Saints, who won a 3A provincial crown last year before the categories for high school football were changed by the SHSAA, will travel to Yorkton next weekend to face the host Raiders.
Yorkton captured their third straight Moose Jaw football league crown on Saturday with a 31-17 home win over the Swift Current Colts.