Adam Rafat was on the receiving end of four touchdown passes as the Bellerose Bulldogs roared to victory in Tuesday’s metro Edmonton junior conference opener at Larry Olexiuk Field.
Rafat, a first-year football player, finished the 47-7 blowout against the O’Leary Spartans with six catches for 215 yards.
In the second quarter, Rafat set a junior team record by taking a short pass 105 yards to pay dirt in the second quarter. He also ran in the two-point conversion.
Quarterback Zach Froese, a Fort Saskatchewan minor football product and 2017 Bantam Bowl participant, surpassed 300 passing yards while completing five TD throws and was also a threat using his legs.
The Bulldogs led 6-0 after the first quarter on Rafat’s 23-yard TD catch and the first half ended with Froese connecting with Jordan Howe on a deep 49-yard TD toss and Bellerose in total control at 41-0.
In the second quarter, Clayton Antoniuk capped off a drive with a five-yard TD burst and his second major was a 65-yard catch and run off a screen pass by Froese.
Zach Roberts also recovered a fumble.
The second half was played with running time and O’Leary started the third quarter with a six-play drive, culminating with a 15-yard TD grab by the uncovered receiver.
The Bulldogs answered in the fourth quarter with backup quarterback Ethan Engel hooking up with Rafat on a six-yard TD.
The victory was the 35th in 36 league and playoff games for the junior Bulldogs since losing the 2011 semifinal and the lone setback was suffered in last year’s division one semifinal. The 27-11 loss to the Jasper Place Rebels, the eventual champions, ended a run of four consecutive junior playoff banners.
The next game is Tuesday versus the Harry Ainlay Titans at 6 p.m. at Larry Olexiuk Field.
The St. Albert Minor Football Association has two games on tap today at Larry Olexiuk Field.
Kickoff times are 10 a.m. between the peewee varsity senior Riders (1-1) and Sherwood Park Wolverines (0-2) and 3 p.m. for the bantam senior varsity Palmer 49ers (2-0) against the Sherwood Park Northstars (0-2).
Both SAMFA teams were victorious last weekend in St. Albert and the scores were 25-6 for the Riders over the Stony Plain Bombers (0-2) and 60-0 for the 49ers over the Bombers (0-2) as the bantams posted their second shutout in a row.
The peewee junior varsity Colts (0-1) and bantam junior varsity Fury (1-1) are in Camrose today to play the host peewee (1-1) and bantam (0-2) Buffaloes.
Last weekend in St. Albert, the Colts lost 39-13 to the Edmonton Seahawks (2-0) and the Fury posted a 56-23 decision against the Seahawks (0-2).
The SAMFA program has seen a 10 percent increase in players this year with 33 in novice, 35 in atom, 49 in peewee, 67 in bantam and 48 with the midget spring league Storm team.
Week three for the St. Albert Minor Football Association atom teams ended with various results for the Jaguars, Buccaneers and Vikings at Foote Field.
The division I Jaguars and Edmonton Chargers battled to a 14-4 draw. A rushing touchdown by quarterback Zander Zelmer tied the score in the second quarter and Zelmer matched the second Chargers’ TD in the last period of the defensive struggle.
Defensive end Bohe O’Donnell-Nyal recorded three sacks as the Jaguars moved to 1-1-1 on the year and will wait to see where the re-tiering places them for the rest of the season.
The division II Bucs closed out the first round of play before re-tiering with a 3-0 record in the 35-7 victory over the Leduc Bobcats.
Slotback Kodyn Hansen ran for three TDs and quarterback Landon Morris scored the other two majors.
The Bucs dominated on defence as Leduc was held scoreless until the final series. Defensive back Cashton Mattar was a force, bringing down Bobcats twice his size and the Weirmeir brothers, Theo and Fletcher, were a pair of unstoppable defensive ends.
The division IV Vikings are 1-2 after the 7-0 loss to the Stony Plain Blue Bombers.
Zach Garrity led the Vikings in tackles and Jaxon McNeil and Max Sponchia also chipped in with solid defensive play to hold the Bombers at bay until the very last play of the game.
Merrick Ouellette and Rayden Tutt paced the offence to a score in the second quarter but the TD was called back.