Spartans join SHSAA final four

CHS player Kohl Eide takes the ball down the field during the Spartans' 56-12 SHSAA quarterfinal victory over Nipawin Oct. 26.

CHS player Kohl Eide takes the ball down the field during the Spartans’ 56-12 SHSAA quarterfinal victory over Nipawin Oct. 26.

by Phil Ambroziak

The Carpenter High School  Spartans football team is two wins away from this year’s provincial championship.

The Meadow Lake squad defeated Nipawin 56-12 in Saskatchewan High Schools Athletic Association (SHSAA) quarterfinal action at Lions Park Oct. 26. As a result of the win, CHS now advances to the semi-finals where they will meet Warman this Saturday (Nov. 2), again at Lions Park.

“Going into provincials, the games often have a different atmosphere, on the field and even in the dressing room, because you’re never too sure who you’re going to be facing and you never really know how the other team stacks up,” explained CHS head coach Craig Paylor.

During Saturday’s quarterfinal game, however, it didn’t take the Spartans long to find their stride, putting 35 points on the board by the end of the first half.

“We played well on both sides of the ball – both offensively and defensively,” Paylor said. “We had one turnover early in the game and a couple fumbles in the first quarter, but I think that was mainly because of jitters and because they were playing in colder weather than they were used to. We still had a comfortable cushion going into the second half.”

Meadow Lake was able to earn 21 more points during the second half and, although the Spartans defence did give up a couple touchdowns, Paylor said that was OK.

“As long as the offence keeps going,” he noted.

As for this Saturday’s game against Warman, Paylor said the benefit going in is it’s a team from the local Northwest 9-Man Football League and a team the Spartans are already familiar with. CHS defeated Warman 61-33 in regular season play Sept. 17. At the same time, however, Warman is also familiar with Meadow Lake.

“They will come more prepared and they have a really good offence,” Paylor said. “We’re both going to make adjustments and, again, there will definitely be a change in atmosphere during this game. We’re going to be facing a much better team than we did during the regular season, so we’re just going to have to hold our end up. When you’re in the final four, no game is ever going to be easy.”

Saturday’s game at Lions Park starts at 1 p.m.

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