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Rebels advance to semi-final; readying for Drumheller Titans

Posted on November 16, 2022 by Taber Times

By Cole Parkinson
Taber Times

It’s been a winning streak of epic proportions for the W.R. Myers Rebels. With another big game on tap this past weekend in the provincial quarter-final, the Rebels took on the Canmore Wolverines.

“Mother Nature did not make things easy on us this week. The massive snow dump throughout the week made it really tough to practice, and we were forced indoors for most of the week,” explained Jason Jensen, head coach. “Once again, the Town did a great job of clearing the field, but unfortunately this time the lines did not survive the snow. The sub-zero temperatures made it impossible for them to get new lines painted in time, so we had to scramble to move the game to the artificial turf at the University of Lethbridge. Through all of this though, I was pretty happy with the job we were able to do getting the boys prepared to play.”

While the Rebels had beaten Canmore last year in the quarter-final, they knew it was going to be another tough game. The Wolverines once again gave everything they had, but the Rebels were just too much as Myers collected a 34-22 win.

“We beat Canmore in this same game last year, and I knew they were out for revenge. We drilled that into the boys all week, driving home the message that we needed to be ready to match their intensity right out of the gate,” stated Jensen. “Right out of the gate, the Wolverines attempted an onside kick, but our kick return was ready for it, and recovered the ball around midfield to start our offence off with great field position. We put together a nice nine-play drive, before quarterback Dane DenHollander found receiver Kade Hansen on a short pass, putting us up 7-0 early. The defence wasn’t to be outdone, as cornerback Xavier Hull intercepted the ball on Canmore’s first play from scrimmage, allowing the offence to go back to work.”

After a great start, the Rebels built off that momentum to put some more points on the board. The first quarter though saw both teams find the end zone multiple times.

“Five plays later, running back Even Rabusic hit the endzone and made it 14-0. Now, at this point, you might assume that this game was going to be a blowout, but hats off to the Wolverines, they didn’t quit. On the ensuing kickoff, their returner found a seam and took the ball the length of the field to score. They elected to go for two points, and were successful, making it 14-8,” continued Jensen. “After the onside kick, and the two-point conversion, we began to wonder if Canmore actually had a regular kicker, or if that is what we were going to see all day. So, we made some adjustments on the kick return team and got the hands team out there. Sure enough, we got another onside kick. That kick return touchdown was a real momentum-changer though, and the Canmore defence forced us to go two and out, and then their offence connected on a deep pass to score. Another two-point conversion later, and we were suddenly behind 16-14, and the first quarter wasn’t even done yet.”

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