Saskatoon – University of Saskatchewan cornerback Jonathan Krahenbil knocked down a University of Calgary quarterback Eric Glavic two-point convert attempt in overtime to give the Huskies a 20-20 (14-13 shootout) win Friday night in front of a regular season record Griffiths Stadium crowd of 6,053.
Tied 20-20 after four quarters, the teams went into a football shootout. Each team begins a series at the 35-yard line, attempting to score. If the first team does so, the other must match or beat the points put on the board to either win the game or force another round.
Calgary had first possession in overtime scoring a touchdown on a Glavic pass to slotback Richard Snyder. The Huskies answered right back with a Rory Kolhert catch in the end zone. In the second round, Huskie quarterback Laurence Nixon gave his team their second touchdown of the overtime landing in the end zone after a Dinos penalty put the Huskies on the one-yard line. Calgary’s Glavic then found the end zone again with a pass to Anthony Parker to put the teams 14-13 in overtime.
Calgary head coach Blake Nill decided to go for the win with a two-point convert attempt after the Parker touchdown. Former All-Canadian Krahenbil was just in time to bat down the ball near the end zone.
“We let this one slip away,” said fourth-year Calgary head coach Blake Nill after the contest. “We had several opportunities, and there wasn’t one specific play where we lost the game. It was our first game of the season and we played pretty well at times, but the mistakes really came back to hurt us.”
As for the gutsy call to go for the two-point conversion in the second overtime frame rather than kick the single-point convert and send the teams to a third shootout round, Nill stood by his decision.
“When you’re that close, just five yards from the end zone to win the game in a very tough place to play, I think you go for it,” he said. “I thought we had the right play called, but unfortunately it just didn’t work out for us.”
Huskie kicker Grant Shaw did the majority of the scoring for his team in regulation time. Shaw hit four-of-five field goals in the game scoring 13 points. Field goals came from 30-, 26-, 35- and 27-yards out. The 27-yard field goal tied the game at 20 in the fourth quarter.
Saskatchewan’s lone regulation time touchdown came on a return by Travis Gorski on a Dinos kicker Aaron Ifield 47-yard missed field goal. Gorski ran the ball 118-yards for the touchdown. The scoring play is the second longest in Huskie football history. Brennan Fobel returned a missed UBC field goal 120 yards in a 1996 game.
Calgary didn’t get on the scoreboard until Ifield hit a 21-yard field goal at 8:55 in the second quarter. The Huskies had led 7-0 on two Shaw field goals’ and a single. It was then that Gorski gave the Huskies a 14-4 lead with his return. Calgary added a single and a Matt Walter one-yard rushing touchdown to enter halftime down 14-11.
Walter helped Calgary take an 18-14 lead when he ran the ball two-yards into the end zone in the third quarter. A Nixon sack by Deji Oduwole in the end zone with one minute left in the third gave Calgary another two points. Shaw hit two more field goals to tie the game.
Nixon completed 21-of-33 passes for 304 yards for the Huskies, while Calgary’s Glavic went 15-for-27 earning 246 yards. Anthony Parker led the Dinos receivers with eight catches and 117 yards, while Scott McHenry was the best for the Huskies finishing with five catches and 106 yards.
With the win the Huskies move to 1-0 with Simon Fraser University Clan and the University of Regina Rams, who were all winners in Week 1 of Canada West football. The Dinos fall to 0-1 with the University of Alberta Golden Bears and the University of Manitoba Bisons.
The Huskies will remain at home to take on provincial rival Regina Rams Friday night, while Calgary returns home to host the University of Alberta Golden Bears on Saturday.