The Central Alberta Buccaneers are crushing it this season, with another victory. In their second game of the season, the Bucs hosted and defeated the Lloydminster Vandals 58-14 on June 3.
According to Community Representative Todd Lewis, both teams went into the game riding high off previous wins – the Vandals had just beaten the 2017 expansion team, the Parkland Predators team 66-0, and the Bucs were still riding the wave that came from beating Grande Prairie 44-14.
The Bucs were able to score a minute and a half into the game, after recovering the opening kick, wrote Lewis in an email to the Sylvan Lake News. Lewis described the accuracy of quarterback Judah Knip as “surgical,” with Knip finding four different receivers on his way to the Vandals’ end zone.
Knip’s brother Corbin said, “anytime a quarterback throws for seven TDs in a game, he’s going to be a standout player – and I’m not just saying that because he’s my brother.”
Lewis said the Bucs were able to keep up the momentum they established early in the game, with steady offensive manoeuvres and reliable defense, when necessary, characterizing the rest of their game against Lloydminster. The entire offense of the Bucs that game was a total of 581 yards, something Lewis described as “not too shabby for week two.”
“It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that the Vandals found the Bucs’ end zone – they managed to complete a series of deep passes, earning them a couple of late-game scores,” wrote Lewis.
Lineman Riley St. Denis described the Vandals as sportsmanlike, adding “there was no quit in them – even when the score got ugly.”
Although they played with resolution and determination, the Vandals were unable to best the Bucs, with the latter’s consistent, effective offensive and defensive game.
Receivers Jessie McPhail and Axsivier Lawrence can be credited with three receiving touchdowns – 207 and 139 yards respectively. Fred Knip, the Bucs’ head coach stated McPhail played with “sticky fingers,” catching everything thrown to him. Knip added that Lawrence “played like a bull, and always got extra yards when he shouldn’t have been able to.”
In a call with the Sylvan Lake News, Lewis described this year as a “rebuilding year” for the Bucs – albeit one that is going exceptionally well.
“So far, we’ve seen a lot of success in the field. We are having an awesome, successful year, this season,” said Lewis. “The biggest difference is in the locker room and on the sidelines – there’s just an atmosphere, with a brand new team, where every single member feels valued, and welcome and part of something bigger than themselves.
“This positivity keeps people itching to practice, play and be a Central Alberta Buccaneer.”
Lewis wrote in an email that the Bucs will host the Calgary Gators in week three. The game is anticipated to be a challenging one, since the Gators are poised to finish in the top two in 2017 – essentially the Bucs are what stands in the way of the Gators finishing in the top two.
“This will be the biggest test the 2017 Bucs have faced so far,” wrote Lewis.
Buccaneer defensive back Tyson Dichrow said the Gators have a large pool of talent from which they can draw. It is the consensus of the Bucs that their game against Calgary will be played hard to every whistle, requiring strong defense for their quarterbacks.
This story was written with files submitted by Todd Lewis, a community representative with the Central Alberta Buccaneers.