The Lakeshore bantam AAA Cougars failed to grab the Quebec bantam Football League (QBFL) provincial championship by losing to the St. Hubert Rebelles 23-8 Sunday at Stade Hébert in St. Léonard.
The Cougars who had beaten a tough opponent in Sun Youth last week came up short against the Rebelles who remained undefeated this season by never allowing Lakeshore to get its offence going properly. The Cougars were unable to score a touchdown on Sunday.
“Things didn’t go the way we wanted. It’s just one of those games where you have to come out and the better will prevail. Unfortunately, we weren’t the better team today. We had a lot of breakdowns, a lot of missed calls... You’re playing for a championship, you have to come out and play. They showed up. We gave a fight but just couldn’t get it done,” said Cougars’ head coach Julian Ramsay.
The Rebelles had a 7-0 lead when the Cougars came knocking on the door early in the second quarter. Place kicker Gabriel Achard got a field goal to tighten up the score with a little more than three minutes elapsed in the quarter. St Hubert increased its lead on its next possession. Receiver Jason Hovington obtained a 50-yard reception for the major at 6:38.
A 37-yard rush by quarterback Philippe Dion and a 33-yard run by running back Cordell Ramsay put the Cougars’ offence within scoring distance towards the end of the quarter. They were stopped at St. Hubert’s 12-yard line, however, and opted for a field goal on a fourth down with 31 seconds left in the half.
Lakeshore needed to come out strong in the second half if they hoped to get back into the game. They however paved the way to the Rebelles’ victory by fumbling the ball twice, throwing two interceptions and failing to score on two first-and-goal situations while St. Hubert added a field goal and a touchdown to confirm their victory. The Rebelles first extended their lead at 3:48 of the third quarter with a field goal.
Thanks to a great punt return from Vincent Malo, St. Hubert obtained a first down at Lakeshore’s 29-yard line early in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Étienne Goulet passed to Charles Lefebvre for a 17-yard touchdown two plays later to put the score at 23-6 with 10:17 remaining in regulation. Lakeshore obtained a safety with 3:18 left to play but wasn’t able to erase the two-major deficit.
“Everything worked well today. Offensively, we moved the ball well. Our defense played an incredible game. We didn’t give up a single touchdown. I’m really proud of my squad today,” said Rebelles’ head coach Arondai Payne.