It was a tough loss for the Holland Hurricanes men’s football team on Saturday versus the University of New Brunswick (UNB) Red Bombers in Atlantic Football League (AFL) regular season action; the Red Bombers would earn the 27-22 win at Alumni Canada Games Place in Charlottetown, PEI.
The Red Bombers entered the game as the top team in the AFL with an undefeated 3-0 record while the Hurricanes, 1-2, sat in third. This was the second time the two teams have met this season; they also played on September 14 in Fredericton, NB with UNB earning the 28-17 win.
On Saturday, in front of a strong crowd of Hurricanes supporters, UNB would open the scoring early in the second quarter after completing a 25-yard pass for the touchdown to take the 7-0 lead.
With 3:22 remaining in the first half, Jack Malo would return a punt for 80-yards and the touchdown to get the ‘Canes on the board. He would repeat this feat just two minutes later when he returned another punt for a touchdown, this time for 65-yards. The ‘Canes held a 14-7 lead at halftime.
In the second half the Hurricanes would continue where they left off offensively. Just 3:26 in, ‘Canes quarterback, Teshaun Tran would connect with Garyth McLean for an 80-yard passing touchdown. The Hurricanes would also add a rouge before the end of the third quarter as they led 22-7 entering the fourth.
As the UNB offence moved down the field, they would ultimately rush from two-yards out to score the touchdown, cutting the Hurricanes lead to 22-14. A UNB hail-mary pass was then completed with 8:54 remaining in the game to move the score to 22-20 for the ‘Canes; the Red Bombers failed to convert on their two-point attempt.
With under four minutes remaining in the game, the Hurricanes forced a fumble (recovered by Javier Fernandez), but would fumble the ball themselves deep in their own territory which was recovered for a touchdown by UNB; this would give the Red Bombers the 27-22 lead in the game.
The Hurricanes would eventually have one last attempt at retaking the lead after an interception by Jerome Tshimeangila deep in UNB territory, but ultimately, they were unable to convert for the score.
The 27-22 victory extends UNB’s perfect record to 4-0 on the season while the ‘Canes drop to 1-3 and remain in third place.
“This was a difficult loss as a whole,” shared offensive coordinator, Owen MacWilliams. “We are still improving each week and it showed against the first-place team this weekend.”
In the loss, quarterback Teshaun Tran went 10-for-21 for 159 passing yards and a touchdown while also rushing for 17-yards on three carries.
The Hurricanes top receiver in the game was Garyth McLean with two receptions totaling 50-yards and a touchdown. Matthew-Uriah Kaye-Mitchell made five receptions for 50 yards with Kymani Simpson making two catches for 37-yards. Tyler Majaury also had a reception for the ‘Canes for 22 yards.
On the ground, Rodrigo Montes de Oca was the rushing leader for the Hurricanes, running for 53 yards on 12 carries.
In other Atlantic Football League action on Saturday, the Dalhousie Tigers defeated the University of New Brunswick-Saint John (UNBSJ) Seawolves, 48-0, in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
The Hurricanes will now turn their focus to the UNBSJ Seawolves who sit at 0-4 on the season. They will face off in Saint John, New Brunswick, on Saturday, October 12 at 1pm at Canada Games Stadium.
In the previous meeting with the Seawolves this season, the ‘Canes walked away with the 12-7 victory on September 21 in Charlottetown.
The Hurricanes will play their final home game of the season on Saturday, October 19 at 2pm at Alumni Canada Games Place in Charlottetown versus the Dalhousie Tigers.
For more information on the Atlantic Football League, visit www.atlanticfootball.co.
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For more information on the Holland Hurricanes, please visit www.hollandhurricanes.com, www.facebook.com/hollandhurricanes, www.twitter.com/hc_hurricanes and www.instagram.com/hollandhurricanes.