Kicking off the season with a hard-fought battle

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The Bonnyville Renegades battled hard against the Cold Lake Rams during their first home game of the season last week.

Although the home team fell to the Rams 32-31 on Monday, Sept. 3, head coach Josh Jubinville was impressed with how they played overall.

“It was actually a really well-fought game. Even though we lost by a point, it came right down to the last couple seconds of the game. It was a really good football game,” he recalled. “We had a lot of really great plays,”

Jubinville added, “Zayden Ward, I think he’s a second year player, had an awesome one-handed catch for a 62-yard touchdown. Then, J’den Friesen, our running back, rushed for 120 to 130 yards and scored two touchdowns.”

Jubinville described safety Erik Desnoyers’ game as “wicked,” while Liam Critch “had an awesome game as middle linebacker.”

The only damper  was a few player injuries, but Jubinville said nothing was too serious.

“We couldn’t have asked for anything better, other than the injury side. On our offensive side, we had a lot of injuries, and that kind of made for a bit a hectic fourth quarter. But, the kids still pulled through. We had a lot of kids playing positions they’ve never played before and it worked out well,” he explained.

Leading up to the first game of the season, Jubinville said the team concentrated on learning the ins-and-outs of the game.

“We focused on key fundamentals, such as blocking, tackling, and trying to run our playbook through as good as we can… The kids are definitely progressing day-by-day in practice, and it’s good to see.”

Player relationships off the field has helped the team mesh well, and that showed throughout the game.

“We have a really good group of kids this year that all seem to be really good friends,” explained Jubinville.

The team had a bye over the weekend, and spent the time resting and preparing for their next faceoff on the field.

“We’re going to focus on keeping the kids healthy, and going back through all the fundamentals,” noted Jubinville, adding this week’s practices will go back to normal to prepare for their upcoming game against the Wainwright Guard Dogs on Sunday, Sept. 16.

Their next home game will be Saturday, Sept. 22 as part of the Scott MacDonald Memorial tournament.

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