49ers hit by Lightning
Bantam football team loses first game of the season
By: Jeff Hansen
| Posted: Wednesday, Oct 10, 2012 06:00 am
The St. Albert 49ers landed with a thud after falling from the undefeated ranks in bantam football.
The Fort Saskatchewan Lightning overpowered the 49ers 36-23 Saturday in front of a stunned hometown crowd at Riel Recreation Park.
The 49ers turned the ball over on downs four times, had one fumble and the Lightning twice picked off quarterback Brendan Guy.
The 49ers were also flagged five times for 80 yards and a player was ejected in the second quarter.
“We played awful. We didn’t play 49ers football. We got beat on defence, offence and special teams,” said Corbin Stewart, a Grade 9 slotback who snagged two touchdown passes in the loss.
Going into the game the 49ers had won four in a row and the Lightning were 3-1.
“We knew they were a good football team and we thought we could play with them so it’s definitely disappointing,” Stewart said. “We can play with them, we just didn’t play our best football today.”
At halftime the 49ers trailed 14-7.
“We should’ve been losing by three, four touchdowns. That score didn’t show how bad we did,” Stewart said.
A couple of 49ers’ penalties proved costly on the Lightning’s second possession in the third quarter, culminating with a one-yard TD run. The two-point conversion made it 22-7.
In the fourth quarter, Guy hit Stewart for a big third down completion at the Lightning 11 and on second down and nine they teamed up again for Stewart’s second TD of the game. Guy’s two-point conversion pass to Jackson Tulloch was successful.
After the kickoff, the Lightning marched 62 yards into the endzone and made the two-point convert play to lead 30-15 with 7:49 remaining. A rough play penalty on the 49ers on the drive kept the Lighting moving forward.
The next time on offence the 49ers coughed up the ball at the Lightning 49, and on second down the visitors ran 60 yards to pay dirt.
Tulloch’s 30-yard TD with 1:49 to go and Parker Waseylenko’s two-point conversion catch with 1:49 to play closed out the scoring.
The result left the Lightning and 49ers tied for first place in the Tier 3/4 division with one game left before the playoffs kickoff in the Capital District Minor Football Association. The top four teams in the Tier 1/2 and 3/4 divisions meet in the crossover round to determine who advances on to the Tier I and Tier II semifinals.
The last league game for the 49ers is Sunday against the Buffaloes (2-2-1) at 12:30 p.m. in Camrose. Last month the Lightning beat the Buffaloes 22-6.
“We just have to put this loss behind us. We have to put in a hard week of practice on offence and defence and get into the playbook and do the plays and run hard,” said Stewart, 14.
The slippery receiver with deceptive speed has been a revelation in his first year of football with close to 500 yards. The Grade 9 Vincent J. Maloney student was doubled-teamed by the Lightning but still managed to grab six passes for 80 yards, including a four-yard reception from Guy in the first half.
“I love it. I also play hockey and I love hockey too but I just have a passion for football,” said Stewart, a centre for the St. Albert Sabres B1 team in bantam interlock.