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RECAP: Gee-Gees drop Panda Game thriller 33-30 in 2OT

Saturday September 30, 2017
Jackson Bennett being tackled.
Photo: 
Marc Bourget

In front of another sell out crowd, the Gee-Gees were unable to get their first Panda Game in in four years, despite leading the game with two-minutes remaining.

The Gee-Gee defence played lights out football, however, the Ravens were able to do enough to keep putting points on the board.

The game was sent to overtime on the foot of fifth-year kicker Lewis Ward, and after two back-and-forth periods the game fell into the hands of the Ravens’ favour on a touchdown run from quarterback Michael Arruda.

Freshman quarterback Alex Lavric played very well for the Gee-Gees, finishing with 212 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions. The Ravens’ defensive line harassed the rookie throughout, but after settling in, he was able to command the offence and put essential points on the board throughout.

“He’s going to learn from it,” said Gee-Gees head coach Jamie Barresi on Lavric’s performance. “He threw three laser shots for touchdowns, didn’t throw an interception. He also got more and more comfortable, seeing more things as the game went along.”

A touchdown run by Bryce Vieira in the second overtime period, was called back for a penalty, a mistake that proved to be the difference maker. A 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty on the Gee-Gees defence put the Ravens in better scoring position, enabling them to go for the win instead of the tie.

Fourth-year wide receiver Kalem Beaver had a solid game receiving and returning punts, he tallied 89 yards and a touchdown receiving and a 100 yards on returns.

“It’s a heartbreaker for sure,” said Beaver. “I’m a fourth-year guy so if I’m not focused and positive in practice then other guys will follow. I have to stay positive and give them something to look up to.” 

Going forward, the team now sits with a 4-2 record going into their bye week. Next up, they will take on the Waterloo Warriors at home in two weeks and close out the regular season on the road at Western on Oct. 21.

The team’s head coach is confident that his team will rebound quickly and that the loss will not weigh heavily on them going forward.

“It’s not a tough week [ahead],” said Barresi. “We’ll be fine.”

Kickoff against Waterloo is set for 1 p.m. on Oct. 14, tickets are available at tickets.geegees.ca. The game will also be broadcasted live on OUA.tv.

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