EDMONTON – The UBC Thunderbirds stormed back from a 21-point deficit on the legs of running back Dave Boyd to stun the Alberta Golden Bears 25-24 at Foote Field in Edmonton on Friday night.
Boyd was nearly unstoppable in the fourth quarter with the third-year running back tallying 126 yards on the T-Birds final two drives of the game, both of which led to touchdowns and the T-Birds first victory of the 2009 season.
The Duncan, BC native tallied a career high 221 yards on 32 carries with a single touchdown, leading UBC all the way back from a 24-3 deficit.
The T-Birds trailed 24-6 at the half and with just a safety and field in the third quarter, UBC was behind 24-11 more than five minutes into the final frame.
With 9:25 left on the clock in the fourth quarter, the T-Birds marched from their own 38-yard line to score their first major of the game, a two-yard plunge by Boyd on third and goal, with 5:05 left on the clock.
The comeback was not complete until Boyd led an 11-play, 105 yard UBC drive in the final three minutes of the game. Boyd was given the ball on eight of the 11 plays with QB Billy Greene notching two completions to Spencer Betts along the way before the sophomore pivot danced into the end zone from five yards out to give the T-Birds their only lead of the evening.
Alberta moved the ball into field goal range as time expired but Golden Bears kicker Hugh Boyd missed from 48 yards with Betts returning the ball out of the end zone to preserve the single point UBC victory.
The Golden Bears opened the game with a touchdown on the opening drive and scored three majors in the first half to take a commanding 24-3 lead with just 21 seconds left on the clock in the first half.
The T-Birds showed the first signs of their comeback effort on the next play as Jordan Grieve returned the ensuing kick-off 59 yards. That return got UBC rookie kicker Billy Pavlopoulos into range to hit his second of three field goals of the game as the half expired.
Greene earned his first victory as a starting quarterback in the CIS and was 14-of-27 for 201 yards with one interception.
Quade Armstrong led the Golden Bears going 14-of-22 for 180 yards and one touchdown while Alberta running back Tendayi Jozzy rushed for 122 yards and a score.