The Concordia Stingers went into a hostile environment at McGill’s Molson Stadium last Friday and overcame a 15-point deficit to take down the McGill Redmen with a 34-29 final, nabbing the 42nd annual Shaughnessy Cup. It was the 11th consecutive victory for Concordia over their cross-town rivals and like many others it didn’t come easy.
The game came down to the very last play as the Redmen pushed the ball down to Concordia’s one-yard line with the help of two Stingers’ pass interference penalties. The defence would not allow another yard. After stopping McGill twice from punching it in, an illegal procedure call against the Redmen pushed them back to the six. McGill quarterback Ryne Bondy’s last pass was picked off in the end zone by Concordia’s Kyle Smith to seal the win.
Kris Robertson gave Concordia their first and only lead of the game with a 62-yard punt return for the score. That broke the 27-27 deadlock with just 2:23 left. That put the game in the defence’s hands and they were up to the task intercepting passes on McGill’s final two drives.
McGill got off to the fast start as Jeffrey Thompson returned the opening kickoff 102 yards to the house. Thompson would rack up 223 yards in kick return yardage. With the electrifying returner putting a hurt on Concordia, the Stingers simply wouldn’t kick it to him in the second half.
Concordia’s defence did a terrific job limiting the Redmen to field goals. The Redmen had favorable field position most of the game but could not convert a single offensive touchdown. McGill’s Austin Anderson booted six field goals, however the inability to finish drives cost the Redmen. McGill added the remaining four points off two team safeties.
Concordia played from behind nearly all game and dealt with tough field position. With quarterback Terrence Morsink making only his second start as Robert MacKay was still out with injury, it took a while for the offence to find their groove. Down 18-3 with two minutes remaining in the first half, Morsink quickly led his team down the field, scoring on a three-yard pass to Edem Nyamadi to cut the deficit to 18-10 at halftime.
After two early interceptions by Morsink in the second half, he settled down and finished with 317 yards passing, going 24-of-42 with two touchdowns. He was composed and recovered well, as the young quarterback credited his teammates for his strong performance.
“We really came out strong as a team. Our defence played great, my o-line blocked well for me and all I had to do was get the ball in the playmakers’ hands, so that’s what I did.” Morsink said.
Nevertheless, Morsink impressed his coach with his performance.
“I thought Terrence was masterful,” said McGrath. ” I felt bad putting that much pressure on a young quarterback, but we couldn’t run the ball very well. He really stepped up to the plate and got things going late in the game.”
With McGill up 24-13 in the final quarter, Morsink led the offence to two touchdown drives. He found Liam Mahoney in the end zone to cut the lead to four before a McGill field goal made it 27-20. Running back Michael Donnelly cashed in on a 15-yard run to tie the game with 3:47 remaining. The Redmen then went two-and-out before punting to Robertson who got some great blocks en route to his go-ahead touchdown.
It was a classic rivalry game coming down to the wire, and the all-time series is now tied at 34.
Concordia will play their next game at home against Bishops on Sept. 25 at 1 p.m.