Central Technical School’s football team started their school’s 100th anniversary weekend in just the right way Friday afternoon.
The Blues defeated their rival Northern Red Knights 7-0 at Varsity Stadium in TDSAA high school football action.
After Central Tech’s (1-2) Jordan Francis took his first punt return of the game inside the Red Knights’ (2-1) 20-yard-line, the Blues managed to score on their opening possession.
Quarterback Michael Petroschke ran the hurry-up offence to perfection scoring the game’s first and only points on a hand off to running back Minkah Abdullah, who punched it in from four yards out with seven minutes remaining in the first quarter.
Abdullah, along with fellow running back Desjadne Jackman, ran for over 120 yards in the game to supply a heavy load of Central Tech’s offensive output.
“Our offensive line was able to get to the second level, so we weren’t getting stuck at the line of scrimmage,” said assistant head coach and defensive coordinator Jeff Hunter. “When those guys get to the second level, our running backs can make plays.”
This is the Blues’ first win of the season following losses to Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Etobicoke the last two weeks and Hunter felt like it was their best effort yet.
“We finally played 60 minutes of football, we finally put a whole game together,” said Hunter. “ It was a lot of preparation. We’ve got a lot of players who haven’t played before, so it takes a while for those guys to get football ready.”
One player that stood out was first-year defensive end Pius Adarkwa. The lanky native of Ghana made 4 tackles for loss and had one forced fumble in his team’s first victory.
While the Red Knights came into this game with an undefeated record, coach Dan Domenico saw from the early going that his team may not have been at its best.
“Let’s face it, when Central Tech is playing us, this is their biggest game of the season and our guys didn’t understand how emotional they were going to be,” said Domenico, following his team’s first loss of the year.
“This is the first time somebody came up, smashed them in the mouth, and said ‘Hey are you going to play a football game or not?’”
Northern quarterback Teshaun Tran started just his third game under centre and was able to string a few completions together, but inexperience and inconsistent blocking made it difficult for the young gunslinger to get on the scoreboard.
“On offence, we had some things that were limiting us today and we made too many silly little rookie mistakes,” said Domenico. “Our line didn’t do a good job early so (Tran) was getting pressured all the time and that sort of rattled him for the rest of the game.”
One bright spot on the Red Knights’ offence was running back Jaiden Hyland, who amassed over 100 total all-purpose yards and provided much of Northern’s offence Friday.
While the 2013 city champion Blues celebrate the school’s centennial and enjoy a win over their rivals, Domenico and the Red Knights are looking to improve for the rest of their season.
“You don’t like to lose anytime, but this was a good game that was a good bellwether in terms of what we need to improve on and that’s going to help us get ready for next week vs Richview, who will be a pretty good test since they’re the defending city champions right now.”
Northern will host the Richview Saints next Friday, October 23rd, in their next matchup, while the Blues will look for their second straight win at East York next Thursday, Oct. 22.