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Late touchdown leads Lively past Lockerby at Lasalle Dome
2020-10-22

True, the field of opposing teams within the SDSSAA flag football loop is not as deep as normal.

In fact, with the restrictions of co-horting limiting divisions at no more than 50 athletes and coaches, the current slate of adversaries is down to just a pair of adversaries per grouping of three.

Still, it's hard not to notice the impressive program that has been assembled under the roof of the Confederation Chargers.

The Val Caron school completed another sweep Wednesday at the Lasalle Dome, with the senior girls blanking the Lasalle Lancers 30-0, while the juniors toppled the Lockerby Vikings 15-1 earlier in the day.

The contest that would bring the three-game schedule to a close - the Lively Hawks upended the Lockerby Vikings 15-7 in the first encounter of the sequence - would see the senior Chargers feature a nicely balanced attack in posting a comfortable victory.

Returning quarterback Zoe Roper ran for a pair of touchdowns, but also connected with both Chelsea Leduc and Lara El-Darazi, lofting balls to the end zone, with Leduc opening the scoring with a lengthy run mere minutes after the opening kickoff.

"I try and look at the defense," said Roper, a 16 year grade 11 student, now in her third year with the team after suiting up at wide receiver back in grade nine. "Usually, I will use fakes, faking to one side and then going to the other."

"My teammates know where they're going and what they're doing, so they usually get themselves open. I just try and do my best to get it to them."

With all teams limited to just 14 players on the roster, and seven on the field at a time (per team), it doesn't leave a whole lot of bodies on the sidelines, whooping it up when you're teammates come up with a big play or two.

Still, since noise in the bubble resonates, there's no denying the very supportive nature of all of the teams this fall. "When someones gets an interception, for sure, or when someone is diving for flags, that's pretty crazy," said Roper.

And if actually playing these games is predicated on the wearing of masks, this multi-sport talent sees no issue with that, whatsoever. "I don't mind it, because I play (club) basketball with the mask on," she said.

"It does get hot pretty easily in here, so when I need to breathe, I just move away from everyone, take a couple of seconds and then come back."

Moving away from everyone was exactly what the junior Chargers were doing as well, as Hannah Crane and Abby Walker both made their way to the end zone, with Ashley Ruddick adding a two-point conversion and Taylor MacNeill capping things off with a rouge.

Sydney Coe busted the goose-egg for the Vikes, launching an impressive punt through to the far wall, accounting for a Lockerby single.

Of all three games, the first was certainly the closest, with Lockerby and Lively deadlocked at 7-7 and just a handful of plays remaining when Addison Elliot found Fyscher McQueen, just over the goal line, giving the Hawks the win.

Lockerby opened the scoring courtesy of a major from Breanna Boisvenue, with Lively getting that one back thanks to a pick six from Miia Hahnamaki. "In our last game, I was playing offense and defense, but defense is my strong suit," acknowledged Hahnamaki.

"I feel I am more confident when I am charging at people, trying to get their flags, or trying to get an interception." In fact, the 16 year old grade 11 athlete looked very much in her element, stepping in front of an errant Lockerby pass and taking it to the house for her first ever interception return for a touchdown.

"I watched the quarterback who was throwing to one of her receivers," said Hahnamaki. "I could see it flying in the air and I knew the girl was behind me. I grabbed it, didn't see anyone near me, so I just gave 'er."

Hannah Berens chipped in with a two point convert for the winners, with Elliot adding a single, while Halle Bertrim neutralized that point with a long punt of her own.

Play resumes this evening with three more games slated for the Lasalle Dome, beginning at 4:00 p.m. (unfortunately, spectators are not permitted).

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