North Toronto blanks Marc Garneau 22-0

Thomas Knee threw three touchdown passes to lead the North Toronto Norsemen to a 22-0 shutout over the Marc Garneau Cougars in city senior high school action on Thursday.

North Toronto improves to 1-1, while Marc Garneau falls to 0-2.

Both teams were shut out in week one as the Norsemen lost 21-0 to East York Collegiate, and the Cougars were dumped by Central Tech 38-0.

“Our defence really worked hard and definitely made a lot of improvements since last week,” North Toronto coach Shawn Hood said. “Consistency was the key today. I’m definitely proud of the guys.”

With the Norsemen leading 1-0, Knee completed a short pass to Robbie Grant to give his side a 7-0 lead eight minutes into the first quarter. The convert made it 8-0.

Defensively, North Toronto created turnovers to finish the opening half and to start the second.

Robert MacIntyre picked off a pass from Marc Garneau quarterback J.J. Hamilton before halftime, then the Norsemen forced a fumble from the kickoff.

“Last game, it was hard getting our timing down,” Hood said. “We had a few more games to prepare [this week]. We really focused on our timing.

“I told the team that if they win the individual battles, they’ll win the team battle, and they really took that to heart.”

Knee and Grant connected once again on a 20-yard touchdown pass with 90 seconds remaining in the third quarter to go up 15-0.

With four minutes to go in the game, Emanuel Athanassakos, who had a 30 yard scamper for a touchdown called back, ran the ball for 20 yards, two shy of the end zone.

On the next play, Knee threw his third touchdown, this time to Keenan Crawford, giving the Norsemen a 22-0 advantage.

“We didn’t make a lot of mistakes,” Knee said. “The other team made a few mental errors and we capitalized on them.”

The Cougars almost broke the shutout with two minutes remaining as Hamilton scrambled nearly the length of the field, but the ball was called back to the 40-yard line after an illegal block.

Hamilton then completed a big pass to Abenezer Worku on the final play, but the receiver was tackled just shy of the goal line.

“Our goal is to get better every week,” Hood said. “We want to play every down of every quarter hard. We’re just taking it one game at a time.”