Photo by MURRAY CRAWFORD/Advocate Staff

Photo by MURRAY CRAWFORD/Advocate Staff

Buccaneers blow away visiting Irish

Recently named the best football team in the Canadian Major Football League, the Central Alberta Buccaneers steamrolled the Airdrie Irish 77-10, improving to 7-0. With a grin, head coach Devon Hand said the team hasn’t played a complete game yet this season but has managed to manhandle their opponents.

Recently named the best football team in the Canadian Major Football League, the Central Alberta Buccaneers steamrolled the Airdrie Irish 77-10, improving to 7-0.

With a grin, head coach Devon Hand said the team hasn’t played a complete game yet this season but has managed to manhandle their opponents.

“Not once have we played four complete quarters of football,” said Hand. “As scary as that is, it can get a lot better.”

Saturday in Lacombe at the M.E. Global Field the Bucs jumped out to a commanding lead, 39-0 after the first quarter and 63-3 after the first half of the Alberta Football League matchup.

Big plays from slotbacks Jamal Henry and Jesse McPhail and wide reciever Josh Blanchard were key to the torching. Henry returned a punt 105 yards for a touchdown, McPahil had a 55-yard touchdown reception to open the third quarter and Blanchard caught an 85-yard touchdown pass.

It wasn’t long before starting quarterback Brandon Leyh was pulled from the game as the blowout was evident early. It was also beneficial for Leyh, who wasn’t at 100 per cent after a tough game against the Calgary Gators a week prior.

“I’m on the same page with the receivers and they’re making crazy plays week in and week out,” said Leyh. “The offence is rolling along and the defence is starting to get back to where they were last year.”

The Mount Allison University Mounties grad said he has developed good rapport with Henry.

“He’s pretty special to say the least,” said Leyh. “I can’t give him enough high praise, nobody can cover him in the league and it makes it easy for me.”

On Defence, Steven Adu returned two interceptions for touchdowns as part of a strong effort that held the Irish off the board until the second quarter and out of the endzone until the fourth quarter.

“The end goal is the national championships and until you get there and are crowned, that’s the focus,” said Hand.

“The ranking lets you know you’ve arrived on the scene. That’s been the whole goal since I took over and it was nice to see. But until we win, it doesn’t matter.”

The Bucs have a week off for the August long weekend and close out their season against the Edmonton Raiders. The Bucs have clinched top spot in the AFL and a bye in the first round of the playoffs.

The Raiders have the potential to be the Bucs first playoff opponent if they win their first round game.

“I think we’re going to get them twice in a row,” said Hand. “That makes it an important game.

The Bucs and Raiders square off on Aug. 6 at the M.E. Global Field in Lacombe. The game starts at 6 p.m.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A candlelight vigil will be held in Red Deer on Thursday to honour the 350-plus people killed in the Easter bombing attack in Sri Lanka. Contributed photo
Candlelight vigil planned for deaths linked to Olymel COVID-19 outbreak

A candlelight vigil is being planned for those who died due to… Continue reading

Traffic will be delayed on 40th Avenue and 19th Street until the end of February. (Advocate file photo).
Traffic delays expected downtown this weekend

Red Deer drivers will be delayed in the downtown area of the… Continue reading

COVID
Red Deer down to 313 active cases of COVID-19

Alberta reports an additional 411 COVID-19 cases

Friday, Alberta Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced the province’s plan to reduce surgical wait times over the next two years. (Photo by Paul Taillon/Office of the Premier)
Alberta provides more funding to reduce surgery wait times

The province is working to provide better access to surgeries over the… Continue reading

Bryson, six, and Mara, eight, play with puppies from Dogs With Wings Saturday. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
WATCH: Dogs With Wings introduces Red Deer program

A program that trains puppies to be certified service, autism, facility and… Continue reading

FILE - In this May 3, 2020 file photo, Veneuzuelan security forces guard the shore and a boat in which authorities claim a group of armed men landed in the port city of La Guaira, Venezuela, calling it an armed maritime incursion from neighboring Colombia. Yacsy vÅlvarez, a woman who was charged in Colombia with helping organize the attempted armed invasion to overthrow Venezuela‚Äôs socialist government, says Colombian authorities were aware of the plotters‚Äô movements and did nothing to stop them and that she‚Äôs being made a scapegoat for the sins of others who abandoned the would be rebels. (AP Photo/Matias Delacroix, File)
3 Venezuelans plead guilty for aiding anti-Maduro plot

3 Venezuelans plead guilty for aiding anti-Maduro plot

Anti-coup protesters maintain their position behind a barricade despite smoke from tear gas in San Chaung township in Yangon, Myanmar Friday, Mar. 5, 2021. Demonstrators defy growing violence by security forces and stage more anti-coup protests ahead of a special U.N. Security Council meeting on the country’s political crisis. (AP Photo)
Protesters defy Myanmar security forces as UN action urged

Protesters defy Myanmar security forces as UN action urged

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa Friday, March 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau holds firm on premiers’ health-care funding demands, COVID-19 aid comes first

Trudeau holds firm on premiers’ health-care funding demands, COVID-19 aid comes first

A vial of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine is displayed at South Shore University Hospital, Wednesday, March 3, 2021 in Bay Shore, N.Y. Janssen Pharmaceuticals is a division of Johnson & Johnson. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Mark Lennihan
Provinces revise vaccination timelines as Johnson & Johnson’s COVID vaccine approved

Provinces revise vaccination timelines as Johnson & Johnson’s COVID vaccine approved

FILE - In this June 11, 2016 file photo, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II waves as she watches the flypast, with Prince Philip, to right, Prince William, centre, with his son Prince George, front, Kate, Duchess of Cambridge holding Princess Charlotte, centre left, with The Prince of Wales standing with The Duchess of Cornwall, and Princess Anne, fourth left, on the balcony during the Trooping The Colour parade at Buckingham Palace, in London. The timing couldn’t be worse for Harry and Meghan. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will finally get the chance to tell the story behind their departure from royal duties directly to the public on Sunday, March 7, 2021 when their two-hour interview with Oprah Winfrey is broadcast. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File)
No winners: UK waits for Harry, Meghan’s take on royal split

No winners: UK waits for Harry, Meghan’s take on royal split

Animated character Raya, voiced by Kelly Marie Tran, left, appears with Sisu the dragon in a scene from "Raya and the Last Dragon." THE CANADIAN PRESS/Disney+ via AP
Canadian animator on adding cultural authenticity to ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’

Canadian animator on adding cultural authenticity to ‘Raya and the Last Dragon’

Members of the National Guard, Philip Fane, center, and Megan Puckett, right, help a motorist register at a COVID-19 vaccination site in Long Beach, Calif., Friday, March 5, 2021. More than 27 million Americans fully vaccinated against the coronavirus will have to keep waiting for guidance from U.S. health officials for what they should and shouldn't do. The Biden administration said Friday it's focused on getting the guidance right and accommodating emerging science. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
California to let Major League Baseball, Disneyland reopen

California to let Major League Baseball, Disneyland reopen

Visitors wearing face masks leave the Alamo, Wednesday, March 3, 2021, in San Antonio. Gov. Greg Abbott says Texas is lifting a mask mandate and lifting business capacity limits next week. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Study finds mask mandates, dining out influence virus spread

Study finds mask mandates, dining out influence virus spread

Most Read