Duggan scores two touchdowns in Goliaths’ season opener

East York running back Dylan Duggan scored a touchdown on offence and defence to help lead the host Goliaths to a 21-0 victory over the North Toronto Norsemen on Thursday in city senior football action.

Duggan’s 45-yard score with 3:54 remaining in the first quarter opened the day for the Goliaths (1-0) and his interception return for a touchdown in the third helped seal the victory.

Both teams were playing in their season openers.

Goliaths head coach Glenn Edwards said Duggan’s first touchdown helped set the tone for the following three quarters.

“We wanted to establish a ground game and we decided we have to bring him inside, find out whether we can plow up through the middle of the line,” Edwards said.

“We’ve had good success with it in practice, but who knows what can happen [in a game]. [Duggan’s] a good heavy guy, that takes a lot to get down. ”

Duggan’s score came after Norsemen (0-1) quarterback Thomas Knee threw an interception inside the Goliaths’ five-yard line with 7:54 remaining in the first.

East York added to their lead at the 6:10 mark of the second as Alex Radevski ran it in from the Norsemen one-yard line, giving his club a two-touchdown lead going into the half.

After Goliaths punter Kyle Stanton pinned the Norsemen inside their own 10-yard line midway through the third, Knee’s second interception thrown came when the ball deflected off the hands of running back Emmanuel Athanassakos and right into the hands of Duggan.

His short scamper into the end zone at 6:19 made it 21-0.

“It’s just one of those plays that you don’t want to have happen in football and it just happened in the wrong time in our end zone,” Norsemen coach Shawn Hood said.

Despite the victory, Edwards was unimpressed with some of his team’s penalties and had them run drills after the conclusion of the game.

“It’s a consequence based upon controllable penalties,” Edwards said.

“If there’s inappropriate language, if there’s a situation where they went offside, it’s stuff they can control. Even if the ref doesn’t call it, I’ll call it.”

While saddled with the loss, Hood is confident the Norsemen performance will improve in the coming weeks. This season marks the first in two years North Toronto is competing as a senior team.

“Timing takes time, that’s the bottom line in football. It takes repetition and it takes practice and we just didn’t have enough,” said Hood, whose club competed in just eight practices before today’s game.

“We didn’t have an exhibition game, so the first half was really our first half of football. For a lot of guys, it was their first time [playing] in two years, so the effort they put forth today was great.”

North Toronto plays Marc Garneau next Thursday at 2 p.m. at Northern Secondary School while East York will host Lawrence Park a half hour later.

Other scores:

Leaside defeated Humberside 33-6. Scoring two running touchdowns, from seven and 21-yards out, was quarterback Michael Kanopoulous. Kanopoulpous also threw a touchdown pass in the win.

In the lone junior game, Don Bosco defeated Richview 14-8.