Dax Bylsma runs with the ball during the Lakers’ dominating first half. They were up 28-7 at the end of the second quarter. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs/Sylvan Lake News

Lakers drown Broncs in semi-final

The Lakers will face Stettler in next week’s final

The H.J. Cody Lakers took to the field Oct. 25 for a semi-final playoff game against the Ponoka Broncs.

The Lakers washed over the Broncs with a 36-7 victory landing them a spot in the final game on Nov. 3 at 12:30 p.m. in Stettler.

The Broncs were the first on the score board with touchdown at 6:02 left in the first, but after the conversion point brought them up to seven that is how their score remained.

Lakers’ Warren Stewart-Brown ran the ball seven yards into the end zone with just a minute left in the first to put Sylvan Lake up on the board.

The second period brought a flood of touchdowns for the Lakers as they found the end zone on three separate occasions.

Dax Bylsma was the ball carrier for two of those touchdowns, while Ethan Murphy-Forest brought in the third with a catch in the end zone with just nine seconds remaining in the half.

During the second half of the game no one managed to find the end zone until Bylsma made a five-yard pass to Reuben Braitenback with 4:12 left in the game.

Lakers’ kicker Chris Ferguson went 4/4 with conversions, while Tyson Attwood made a catch for a two-point conversion in the fourth.

“On defence we accomplished what we needed to, which was shutting down their best player… and we did it as a collective group,” said Coach Jeremy Braitenback of Broncs’ Justin Matchett.

“He didn’t have a lot of big plays today and we said ‘if he doesn’t beat us, we’ll win’ and that’s really what happened,” added Coach Braitenback.

“Offensively we did enough to score some points when we needed to,” he continued.

The Lakers’ defence caught several interceptions during the playoff game, which helped the offence out on the gridiron.

“Our offence had short field to work with and just muscled into the end zone a lot of the time,” explained Braitenback. “[They] just did what they needed to do.”

Thursday’s win brings the Lakers to this week’s finals against Stettler.

“We’re going to look at the game film and what we did wrong last time we played them and correct those mistakes and we’ll just try to come out and play hard because Stettler is a really good, physical team, so it’s a tough challenge,” said Braitenback.

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Reuben Braitenback makes a run down the sidelines to escape tackle from the Broncs’ defence. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs/Sylvan Lake News

Eseces Werner searches for a hole to sneak through to gain some yards for the Lakers in the second half of the Oct. 25 game. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs/Sylvan Lake News

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