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Playoff match-ups set in NSSAF D-3 football

Quarterback Connor Ross, shown in action against West Kings earlier this season, came up big for the Central Kings Gators in a big game Nov. 8 against Dr. J.H. Gillis. Ross completed six of eight passes for 129 yards and ran for 61 yards on five carries and scored a pair of rushing touchdowns, leading CK to a 55-6 win ansd sole possession of second place. In Division 3 playoff action this weekend, first-place NKEC hosts West Kings while the Gators play host to Avon View.
Quarterback Connor Ross, shown in action against West Kings earlier this season, came up big for the Central Kings Gators in a big game Nov. 8 against Dr. J.H. Gillis. Ross completed six of eight passes for 129 yards and ran for 61 yards on five carries and scored a pair of rushing touchdowns, leading CK to a 55-6 win ansd sole possession of second place. In Division 3 playoff action this weekend, first-place NKEC hosts West Kings while the Gators play host to Avon View.

CANNING - The playoff match-ups are set in Division 3 of the NSSAF Football League after wins by NKEC and Central Kings Nov. 8 on the last weekend of the regular season.

NKEC wrapped up first place in D-3 with a hard-fought 13-7 win over Avon View in cold and windy conditions on Kinsmen Field in Canning.

According to Titans’ head coach Reg Ogilvie, the win – and the first-place finish – “culminates a journey from worst to first over the past three years.”

Avon View, he said, “gave us everything we could handle, but our kids are mentally tough and overcame some adversity to pull out the win in the fourth quarter.” At halftime, the score was tied at seven.

Running back Gavin Schofield and receiver Kelvin Upshaw had touchdowns for NKEC, which got “great performances” from Kier Frank-Rodgers, Royce and Charles Glomeau and Logan Potter as well as from Upshaw and Schofield.

Ogilvie also had praise for his assistant coaches, in particular Andrew Hartnett and Devon Adams. “I can’t say enough about the job Andrew and Devon do on the defensive side of the ball, getting these young men ready each and every week.”

NKEC completed the regular season having allowed 49 points in eight games – “an average of less than seven points per game,” Ogilvie pointed out.

The Titans will now have home field advantage throughout the D-3 playoffs, beginning with a semifinal match-up with West Kings Nov. 15 at 1 p.m. in Canning.

The Wolverines made the playoffs without taking the field when Dr. J.H. Gillis, needing to either win or lose by less than 30 points, instead ended up on the short end of a 55-6 decision at the hands of the Central Kings Gators Nov. 8 in Cambridge.

The win by Central Kings snapped a two-game losing streak for the Gators, and according to CK head coach Larry Priestnall, represented a turnaround for his players who had lost to both NKEC and Avon View the previous two weeks.

“I really don’t know where it came from,” Priestnall said Nov. 9. “Everybody was into the game and played really well.”

He pointed out, “we’d had only one rushing touchdown all year. Yesterday, we had seven. We’d had only one quarterback sack all year. Yesterday, we had four.”

Connor Ross keyed the victory, completing six of eight passes for 129 yards, and rushing for 61 yards on five carries and a pair of touchdowns.

Colton Balsor, who had run the ball well all season but had not scored a touchdown, rushed for 140 yards on 14 carries and reached the end zone four times. Darien McBride had six carries for 42 yards and one touchdown.

Eric Holliefield caught three passes for 74 yards. Geoff Mullen had two catches for 35 yards, and also kicked two field goals. CK had a safety to round out their scoring.

Defensively, the Gators got solid performances from Trayce Jarvis; Brennan Ells; Benjamin Dutiellerd, an exchange student from France; and Nick Clarke, who played both ways and “was all over the field” on defence.

The Gators “subbed freely” in the second half, “and all the subs played well.”

Priestnall acknowledged he wasn’t surprised the Gators won, “but I was very surprised by the score. I was afraid of Antigonish, but our guys played very well and (Dr. Gillis) played like we played last week.”

The Gators will host Avon View in a playoff semifinal Nov. 15 at 1 p.m. in Cambridge.

Meanwhile, a disappointing season for the Horton Griffins came to an end with a 50-7 loss to Citadel Nov. 6 in Halifax. Mac Muirhead kicked a field goal, and Horton had two safeties to round out the scoring for the 0-8 Griffins.

“I’m not going to use it as an excuse, but we had a ton of injuries this year,” Griffins’ head coach Steve Melanson said Oct. 9. “We had probably 15 guys that missed time, which makes it really hard to practice.”

Asked if Horton might consider dropping down a division for next season, Melanson acknowledged, “we’re going to have to sit down and weigh everything.”

NKEC wrapped up first place in D-3 with a hard-fought 13-7 win over Avon View in cold and windy conditions on Kinsmen Field in Canning.

According to Titans’ head coach Reg Ogilvie, the win – and the first-place finish – “culminates a journey from worst to first over the past three years.”

Avon View, he said, “gave us everything we could handle, but our kids are mentally tough and overcame some adversity to pull out the win in the fourth quarter.” At halftime, the score was tied at seven.

Running back Gavin Schofield and receiver Kelvin Upshaw had touchdowns for NKEC, which got “great performances” from Kier Frank-Rodgers, Royce and Charles Glomeau and Logan Potter as well as from Upshaw and Schofield.

Ogilvie also had praise for his assistant coaches, in particular Andrew Hartnett and Devon Adams. “I can’t say enough about the job Andrew and Devon do on the defensive side of the ball, getting these young men ready each and every week.”

NKEC completed the regular season having allowed 49 points in eight games – “an average of less than seven points per game,” Ogilvie pointed out.

The Titans will now have home field advantage throughout the D-3 playoffs, beginning with a semifinal match-up with West Kings Nov. 15 at 1 p.m. in Canning.

The Wolverines made the playoffs without taking the field when Dr. J.H. Gillis, needing to either win or lose by less than 30 points, instead ended up on the short end of a 55-6 decision at the hands of the Central Kings Gators Nov. 8 in Cambridge.

The win by Central Kings snapped a two-game losing streak for the Gators, and according to CK head coach Larry Priestnall, represented a turnaround for his players who had lost to both NKEC and Avon View the previous two weeks.

“I really don’t know where it came from,” Priestnall said Nov. 9. “Everybody was into the game and played really well.”

He pointed out, “we’d had only one rushing touchdown all year. Yesterday, we had seven. We’d had only one quarterback sack all year. Yesterday, we had four.”

Connor Ross keyed the victory, completing six of eight passes for 129 yards, and rushing for 61 yards on five carries and a pair of touchdowns.

Colton Balsor, who had run the ball well all season but had not scored a touchdown, rushed for 140 yards on 14 carries and reached the end zone four times. Darien McBride had six carries for 42 yards and one touchdown.

Eric Holliefield caught three passes for 74 yards. Geoff Mullen had two catches for 35 yards, and also kicked two field goals. CK had a safety to round out their scoring.

Defensively, the Gators got solid performances from Trayce Jarvis; Brennan Ells; Benjamin Dutiellerd, an exchange student from France; and Nick Clarke, who played both ways and “was all over the field” on defence.

The Gators “subbed freely” in the second half, “and all the subs played well.”

Priestnall acknowledged he wasn’t surprised the Gators won, “but I was very surprised by the score. I was afraid of Antigonish, but our guys played very well and (Dr. Gillis) played like we played last week.”

The Gators will host Avon View in a playoff semifinal Nov. 15 at 1 p.m. in Cambridge.

Meanwhile, a disappointing season for the Horton Griffins came to an end with a 50-7 loss to Citadel Nov. 6 in Halifax. Mac Muirhead kicked a field goal, and Horton had two safeties to round out the scoring for the 0-8 Griffins.

“I’m not going to use it as an excuse, but we had a ton of injuries this year,” Griffins’ head coach Steve Melanson said Oct. 9. “We had probably 15 guys that missed time, which makes it really hard to practice.”

Asked if Horton might consider dropping down a division for next season, Melanson acknowledged, “we’re going to have to sit down and weigh everything.”

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