Sylvan Lake marches past Cold Lake, into next round of provincials

The weather conditions and the Cold Lake Royals defence left the Sylvan Lake Lakers with one option in Saturday’s provincial Tier 3 North Regional high school football semifinal. So, like most good team do, the Lakers used their out card as quarterback Skylar Selk passed for 227 yards and one touchdown in a 22-9 victory over the visitors. “We’ll take it. I guess it was kind of an ugly win,” said Lakers head coach Jeremy Braitenback.

SYLVAN LAKE — The weather conditions and the Cold Lake Royals defence left the Sylvan Lake Lakers with one option in Saturday’s provincial Tier 3 North Regional high school football semifinal.

So, like most good team do, the Lakers used their out card as quarterback Skylar Selk passed for 227 yards and one touchdown in a 22-9 victory over the visitors.

“We’ll take it. I guess it was kind of an ugly win,” said Lakers head coach Jeremy Braitenback.

Except that Selk’s passing yardage was anything but unattractive on a cold, windy day that featured snowflakes before the contest was complete.

“I think that’s kind of what the game dictated, that we had to throw,” said Braitenback. “They (Royals) stopped our running game so we had to pass and we completed enough to get some points. And the defence did a great job and held on for us.”

The Lakers never trailed in the game, and in fact grabbed a permanent lead when Landon Rosene returned the opening kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown.

“We should draw that up every game,” Braitenback joked.

But seriously . . .

“We’ve worked on that all year, but nobody we’ve played has been able to kick the ball deep enough,” said the Lakers sideline boss. “This was the first time it all came together and it didn’t hurt that Landon Rosene was returning, as well.”

Rosene was also a major threat through the air, hauling in six passes for 96 yards. Tyrese Hamilton led a Sylvan Lake ground game with 28 yards on four carries.

The Lakers coughed up a punt single in the first quarter, then recovered a Cold Lake fumble at the Royals’ 31-yard line 3:08 into the second quarter and got into the end zone four plays later on a five-yard run by Hamilton.

Royals quarterback Justin Hodinsky got his team back into the game two minutes later, running 40 yards for a touchdown that didn’t include a convert.

“We didn’t really know much about their team. We kind of knew that their quarterback could run and that #36 (Ivan Boychuk) was a good linebacker,” said Braitenback. “Their quarterback wasn’t a great passer today, though. He was more of a threat with his feet and if he had run more I think we might have been in trouble.”

As it was, Hodinsky ran for 124 yards on nine carries and completed eight of 30 pass attempts for 100 yards, but didn’t produce another score for his team.

The Lakers jumped out to a 22-7 lead when Selk, from the one-yard line, hit Chase Elwood in the end zone late in the third quarter.

The Royals scored a safety six minutes into the fourth quarter and then worked down to the Lakers’ two-yard stripe with just over two minutes remaining. But Elwood intercepted Hodinsky’s throw into the end zone and the winners ran out the clock.

Elwood, a defensive end/receiver, also knocked down a pair of passes and recorded a sack.

“We kind of use him around the goal line because of his height,” said Braitenback. “He’s a big-play kind of guy. He was last year’s league rookie of the year so we have him next year as well.”

The Lakers will travel to Whitecourt to face the Cats in this Saturday’s Northern Tier 3 final.

“We don’t know much about them, either,” Braitenback said Sunday. “Expect that their record (7-3) and their game yesterday (52-7 North semifinal win over St. Albert) says they’re going to be a pretty tough opponent.”

l The Hunting Hills Lightning were 28-7 losers to the host Okotoks Foothills Falcons in a Tier 2 South semifinal Saturday. Details were unavailable.

l The Olds Spartans defeated the Drumheller Titans 34-19 in a Tier 4 South semifinal and will take on the host Willow Creek Cobras this Saturday.

l The Rimbey Spartans thumped the Edson Holy Redeemer Rebels 59-27 in six-man regional action and will face the Ecole Desroscher Glaciers of Jasper in the North final Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at Lacombe.

l The Sylvan Lake Bears mauled the visiting Bonnyville Renegades 64-0 in the provincial Tier 3 peewee championship game Saturday.

Just Posted

Red Deer RCMP ready for new mandatory alcohol screening law

Red Deer RCMP are ready to enforce a new law intended to… Continue reading

Bentley family left without a home grateful for community support

Central Albertans are coming together to support a family left homeless after… Continue reading

‘My nightmare began again’: Close call as bus carrying Humboldt crash survivor rear-ended

CALGARY — A terrifying ordeal for Humboldt Broncos survivor Ryan Straschnitzki this… Continue reading

Annual pace of housing starts picked up in November, tops expectations

OTTAWA — Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the annual pace of… Continue reading

China pressures US, Canada ahead of Huawei hearing

BEIJING — China raised the pressure on the United States and Canada… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer and District Kennel Club Dog Show at Westerner Park

The Red Deer and District Kennel Club is holding a dog show… Continue reading

Orlando SC acquires Canadian Tesho Akindele in trade with FC Dallas for cash

ORLANDO, Fla. — Canadian forward Tesho Akindele was traded to Orlando City… Continue reading

Koskinen notches third shutout, McDavid gets winner as Oilers blank Flames 1-0

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers appear to have shored up their defence… Continue reading

Beyonce performs at pre-wedding party in India

Beyonce brought her star power to a pre-wedding party for the daughter… Continue reading

Kirk Douglas celebrates 102nd birthday

LOS ANGELES — Actor Kirk Douglas got to celebrate his 102nd birthday… Continue reading

Ellen Page steps up attack on Nova Scotia pulp mill’s effluent pipeline

HALIFAX — Hollywood actor Ellen Page is doubling down on her criticism… Continue reading

Pence aide out of running to be Trump’s next chief of staff

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s top pick to replace chief of staff… Continue reading

Swath of South faces wintry mess: Snow, sleet, freezing rain

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A massive storm brought snow, sleet, and freezing rain… Continue reading

‘I killed my best friend’: Opioids’ fatal grip on mayor, pal

MOUNT CARBON, Pa. — Janel Firestone found her son — the 24-year-old,… Continue reading

Most Read