Adjustments that paid off big

Adjustments that paid off big


Unable to “match the intensity” of the Huskies at the start of the game, the Rouge et Or responded with a series of adjustments which proved to be very profitable after half-time and which played a major role in claiming an 11th Vanier Cup.

In the first 30 minutes of the game, the University of Saskatchewan showed why they had so much aerial success during the season. Well-protected fifth-year quarterback Mason Nyhus was able to maneuver without too much difficulty.

It was in those first two quarters that the Western representatives scored 17 of their 24 points. 

Each time they added points to the scoreboard, it was following offensive streaks over 70 yards.

Stick together

However, the tide turned as soon as the half-time break returned. The Rouge et Or forced the Huskies to clear the ball on their next three possessions, in addition to having the luxury of intercepting a pass from Nyhus in the end zone in the fourth quarter.

“ We made bad games. We gave them games. At the half we said to ourselves: it's over, we're going to play together. We stuck together and we gave them nothing more,” explained linebacker Charles-Alexandre Jacques, voted defensive MVP of the game.

No more pressure

Earlier last week, head coach Glen Constantin noted that it was going to be necessary to complicate the life of the pivot of Saskatchewan by putting a lot of pressure on him. 

A task that proved easier said than done early in the game.

“At the start, I think we didn't match their intensity. Our blankets weren't up to snuff. We made mistakes on our front. We realigned our front at the half. We changed a lot of blankets. We made him hesitate and we were able to put pressure on it,” Constantine recalled on Saturday, moments after receiving the traditional Gatorade shower.

A comeback

Captain Maxym Lavallée had much the same speech as Charles-Alexandre Jacques. The defensive back was happy with the way the defense had behaved in the second half, but he also saluted the long offensive series led by Arnaud Desjardins.

“We knew that if we stopped their big plays, we were able to win that game. We arrived at the half, it was 17 to 17. […] We returned to the field. Our attack made big series of plays. They really spent a lot of time on the board making points. Defensively, we came back [in force] to play our match. We didn't leave many points in the second half, that's for sure. »

After returning to Quebec City on Saturday evening, the Rouge et Or players celebrated their national title in style before enjoying a well-deserved day off on Sunday.< /strong>