Realty One

Thursday, August 24, 2017


MEDICINE HAT, Alta. - The University of Regina Rams opened up the 2017 season with a 39-3 win over Calgary Wednesday night in exhibition action at the Methanex Bowl.

A pair of first-year rookies were the stories on both sides of the ball for the Rams. Zachary Shalley caught eight passes for 70 yards including two touchdown receptions, while Tanner Schmekel had a game-high 4½ tackles including a sack on which he not only caused a fumble, but also recovered the ball deep in Calgary territory. Schmekel finished the night with 3½ tackles for loss, sending the Dinos back a total of 16 yards.

First-year quarterback Seb Britton finished 8-for-16, passed for 86 yards in the win, and threw all three of the Rams’ touchdown passes. He not only hit Shalley twice in the end zone, but also connected on an 18-yard catch-and-run with Semba Mbasela in the second half. Tyler Vieira was efficient in the second half, completing nine of his 13 pass attempts for a total of 116 yards.

Carter Hewson was the U of R’s leading rusher, ending up with five carries for 35 yards.

The Rams sparkled defensively all game, holding Calgary to just 87 yards of total offence and forcing five turnovers – two on third-down stops and three on fumbles. The special teams got into the act as well, with Thomas Huber recovering a pair of fumbles off of muffed punts as the Dinos lost a total of five fumbles in the game. The Rams finished the game with six sacks, getting one apiece from Ryan Warner, Eric Wicijowski, Nicholas Dheilly, Schmekel, Blake Turner, and Travis Pelletier.

The Rams will now prepare for their Canada West opener, which they’ll host on Friday, Sept 1. against UBC at the new Mosaic Stadium. The Thunderbirds will also come into that game following an exhibition win, as they took a 33-30 victory over Alberta on Wednesday in Kamloops, B.C.

QuotableHead coach Steve Bryce: 
“I’m happy, but not too excited because it’s exhibition. Like I told the guys after the game, I think we found our mojo, but we need to play with consistency to keep that. I thought our starters battled well in the first quarter, but I was so impressed with our Ram cubs – they came here to impress tonight and they’re going to make our job very difficult in terms of assigning positions on the depth chart. You can go down the list – Shalley, Schmekel, Kyle Borsa, Semba Mbasela, Lucas Nurkowski – we have so many young players of outstanding quality and they showed it tonight.”

Turning Point: Wicijowski’s sack in the second quarter

By mutual arrangement, both coaches played their starters throughout the first quarter before starting to move to the backups by the start of the second. The teams played a scoreless first quarter before trading a pair of field goals in the first half of the second, but a big play by Wicijowski turned the tide late in the quarter. He got through to Calgary second-string pivot Adam Sinagra for a sack fumble, which Dheilly picked up to give the Rams the ball at the Dinos’ 40-yard line. Three rushes by Borsa and a Calgary penalty brought Regina down to the 13, leading to Britton finding Shalley for the first major of the game. That gave the Rams a 10-3 advantage at halftime, and it was all Regina after that.

Exhibition Notes
Third time was the charm for the Rams tonight, as this marked the third consecutive season that Regina and Calgary have kicked off the season with a Medicine Hat exhibition. The Dinos were victorious in both of those previous two meetings, winning 25-9 in 2015 and 37-13 in 2016. They also took a 26-10 win over the Rams in Medicine Hat way back in 2008. Overall, the Rams now have a 5-7 record against U SPORTS opposition in exhibition games.

(Courtesy Braden Konschuh/Cougar Athletics)


Anonymous said...

Are they ranked to win the west ?

Anonymous said...

I'm sure coach Bryce will keep the boys heads in check after this win. Because remember the old saying from Allen Iverson "it's not a game-it's practice'

Unknown said...

Many people at the game? Is it licenceed? #alcb