The Blues fought hard to secure a playoff spot. PHOTO COURTESY OF SEYRAN MAMMADOV/VARSITY BLUES

The Varsity Blues football team dropped their game against McMaster University this Saturday, losing a 16–8 contest in a game with major playoff implications. The Blues dropped out of a playoff spot with two games left in the season before their next game against York University.

In Toronto’s first drive of the game, quarterback Clay Sequeria threw the ball into double coverage and was picked off. McMaster was unable to capitalize and went two and out on their ensuing drive. On Toronto’s next play, Sequeria fumbled a snap deep in the Blues end, which was recovered by McMaster and set them up in great field position.

McMaster went two and out again on their drive, and were forced to settle for a field goal. Toronto had to punt on their next drive, but the ball was dropped by the McMaster returner, and Toronto recovered the ball. Sequeria made a few plays to the endzone, one of them almost being a touchdown, but the receiver was ruled out of bounds. Toronto was forced to settle for a field goal, and tied the game 3–3.

In the second quarter, Blues linebacker Daniel Solaroli made an interception, but Toronto was unable to use the opportunity. McMaster got the ball back, and made a pass from around midfield into the endzone into double coverage for the touchdown. McMaster was also able to get another field goal to bring their lead up to 13–3 to end the half.

In the third quarter, the Blues were able to get another interception, this time defensive back Jamal Johnson, but they were unable to capitalize, as Sequeria was sacked multiple times. Sequeria faced immense pressure from the McMaster defence, which often resulted in a sack, or a rushed pass.

“We’ll have to look at what they were doing and check and see what we’re doing in protection and help [Sequeria] out a little bit,” Blues head coach Greg Marshall said in a postgame interview. “Obviously that’s the plan with everybody is to disrupt his timing, and we were doing a pretty good job the first few weeks. It seems like the last couple of weeks, they’ve shown us a couple things we need to adjust.”

At the beginning of the fourth quarter, McMaster was pinned deep in their own zone, and when they reached the third down, they opted to take the intentional safety to prevent Toronto from gaining good field position. In the next Toronto drive, they were able to hit a field goal to bring it to a one score game at 16–8.

Toronto would have one more drive to tie up the game, but they were unable to do so, even with a few good looks in the endzone. McMaster was able to run out the clock and end the game.

“Our guys played well in all areas,” Marshall continued. “That was a good football game. Not the usual high-scoring affair, but it was more of a defensive slug fest. And there [were] a lot of guys making a lot of plays. It just happened to be on the defensive side for both teams.”

Stay up to date. Sign up for our weekly newsletter, sent straight to your inbox:

* indicates required

Tags: , ,