Stung by the missing bee, Stingers get demolished 37-0 in season opener
The Stingers entered the 2015 season with new football uniforms in hopes that the team could improve on a 5-3 record from last season. But Sherbrooke’s Vert et Or had other plans in the Stingers home opener on Friday night. The Vert et Or beat the Stingers 37-0, making it the second straight game against Sherbrooke where they were shut out. The Stingers used three quarterbacks in the game, but all of them had nothing to show for their performances.
Vert et Or’s fifth-year quarterback, Jérémi Roch, picked apart the Stingers’ defence, completing 23/30 passes for 291 yards and two touchdown passes. Roch moved the ball down the field all throughout the first half to give his side the 23-0 advantage by halftime. Roch was pulled with the game sealed in the fourth quarter for backup Mathieu Loranger, who completed a 51 yard pass to third-year receiver, Carl Gagnon, in his first play of the game. The Vert et Or ended the game with 342 passing yards and a surprising 130 rushing yards.
Throughout training camp, the Stingers quarterback competition between Jahlani Gilbert-Knorren and Trenton Miller was hotly debated. In the end the job went to Gilbert-Knorren who already had some experience under his belt when he last played for the University of Saskatchewan Huskies. The decision to start Gilbert-Knorren was decided a day after the preseason game against Queens according to Stingers coach, Mickey Donovan.
Donovan chose Knorren because of his dual-threat capabilities. Gilbert-Knorren went 7/10 for 91 passing yards and one interception Friday night. Knorren who looked good early on, opened the game completing his first four passes. However, he was benched after throwing a costly pick six to Sherbrooke’s Gael Bernard-Perron.
“It was unfortunate, I thought I was playing well and seeing the field well but I made some mental errors and let my team down which is unacceptable. I deserve it,” said a visibly frustrated Gilbert-Knorren.
Miller, who replaced the benched Gilbert-Knorren, completed 11 of 21 attempts for 106 yards. Miller appeared to be the more successful of the two quarterbacks as he did manage to move the ball downfield. Nevertheless, untimely mental mistakes the Stingers failed to get on the board.
Stingers third string quarterback, Colin Sequeira, also saw action in the fourth quarter hoping that he would provide some much needed magic. But, like his predecessors, he didn’t fair much better. Sequeira went, 5/8 for 39 yards and one interception.
“We just could not string enough good plays at a time. There would be one thing wrong on each drive that would screw us up,” said Miller.
“Jahlani is going to push me and I’m going to push him, we are going to keep on battling until eventually one of us will rise to the top,” noted Miller on the starting job competition.
Three quarterbacks will be dressed and playing in next week’s game against the Bishop’s Gaiters according to Donovan. “You can never have one solidified starter, they all have to compete day in and day out that how it goes,” Donovan said.