BlackburnNews.com Author and Photo Credits: Jake Jeffrey:
A pair of late touchdowns wasn’t enough for the Sarnia Imperials, as they dropped the NFC Championship game 29-21 to the GTA All Stars.
Sarnia opened the scoring early in the first quarter, with their defense returning an interception for a touchdown, getting the home team out to an early 7-0 lead.
GTA responded with a lengthy drive up field, eating up the majority of the first quarter, but ultimately tying the game at seven.
Pat Wright opened the second quarter with a 22 yard gain through the air. Unfortunately for the home side, it resulted in just a single point on a punt through the end zone. The visitors would once again respond in the very next series, with another touchdown pass over the middle to give the All Stars a 14-8 edge going into half time.
Despite Sarnia getting the ball to start the second half, it was GTA who would strike first, running it in from 24 yards out. Following a failed two point conversion, a strong kick off from the All Stars gave them a single point, making it 21-8.
Penalties would continue to get Sarnia into trouble in the third quarter. After it appeared Sarnia had stopped GTA on the goal line, a penalty to the defense gave the All Stars a fresh set of downs. They would take advantage of the opportunity with a TD pass, making it a three possession game.
Down 29-8 in the fourth quarter, the Imperials started to find some room for quarterback Pat Wright, resulting in a few lengthy offensive drives. When things seemed to be slipping away, Sarnia’s defense once again got things going, coming within a yard of their second pick six of the game. The Imperials would convert from the one yard line, making it a 29-15 ball game.
A successful onside kick gave Sarnia a late opportunity, but a quick interception shifted things in GTA’s favour once again. The back and forth continued as a quick four and out by the All Stars gave the home side the ball.
On four and long, QB Pat Wright aired out a long pass, resulting in a touchdown for Sarnia. After failing to convert on the extra point, Sarnia trailed by eight points with 1:12 remaining.
They kept the home fans on their feet, with another successful onside kick.
Hoping for another lengthy gain through the air, Wright once again through a long pass down field. It didn’t work out this time, as GTA picked it to seal the deal, and cap off the 29-91 win.
Following the game, Sarnia was awarded the trophy for Western Conference Champions. They were also the NFC Regular Season Champions with a 7-1 record.