Golden Gaels Photos
Queen's Golden Gaellery by Jeff Chan
McMaster at Queen's 20070915
The Gaels came from behind at the half...again, and beat the McMaster Marauders for the second straight time and raised their 2007 record to 3-0!!
GIFFIN ROLLS AS GAELS COME FROM BEHIND TO BEAT MCMASTER IN FOOTBALL
Kingston, Ont. (QUEENS) – Kingston’s Mike Giffin had three touchdowns leading the No. 10 ranked Queen’s Golden Gaels to a 24-20 come-from-behind victory over the No. 9 McMaster Marauders, Saturday at Richardson Stadium. Early in the fourth quarter, with the Gaels trailing McMaster 20-9, Queen’s drove down the field and Giffen ended the drive on third and goal from the one-yard line to make the score 20-16. With 8:19 left in the fourth, Gaels Quarterback Dan Brannagan of Burlington, Ont., connected with Giffen on a nifty nine-yard pass to put the Gaels up for good 23-20. “This is a big confidence boost for us.” said Giffin. “We started 2-0 last year and then lost four in a row. This game was a big change for us. I think we realize we’re pretty good this year, so hopefully we can keep it going next week.” Giffin, a fourth-year running back collected his third consecutive game with 100-plus-yards running posting a total of 115-yards on 20 carries and one rushing touchdown. He also tallied four receptions with 93 receiving yards and two touchdowns. “Mike is a big reason why we are balanced right now, and when you’re balanced you can do some things.” said Head Coach Pat Sheahan. “The passing game works much better when you got a guy in the backfield that can hurt you.”
McMaster conceded a single point with 4:50 left in the game to make the score 24-20. Queen’s linebacker Paul Boshyk of Etobicoke, Ont., sealed the Gaels victory with under a minute left in the game by intercepting McMaster QB Adam Archibald.
Queen’s first touchdown was a 74-yard screen pass by Brannagan to Giffin which put Queen’s up 9-0. McMaster then rallied for 20 points with Archibald connecting for two consecutive touchdown passes. Archibald hit running back Ugonna Ihekwoaba of Burlington for a 31-yard pass and then completed an eight-yard pass to Rob Serviss of Waterloo for his second touchdown of the game.
Archibald competing in his native Kingston was 23 for 42 for a total of 228 yards passing and two touchdowns. Queen’s QB Brannagan was 17 for 29 and 273 yards while Robb Bagg of Kingston was Queen’s top receiver with 8 receptions and 89 yards. McMaster running game countered for a total of 112 yards with Ihekwoaba leading the Marauders with 47-yards.
The Gaels win marks the third consecutive come-from-behind victory this season. In all three regular season games the Gaels have trailed heading into the third quarter. Queen’s first two opponents included Western and Guelph. The Golden Gaels improve their record to 3-0 while the Marauders fall to 1-2. This week marked the first time since 2004 the Gaels made an appearance on the CIS National Football rankings. McMaster was the nation’s ninth best team heading into today’s game one spot better then the Gaels. Next week the Gaels travel to Windsor to take on the Lancers in Game 4 at 7:00pm (EST).
NOTES: McMaster Quarterback Adam Archibald of Kingston suffered a concussion on the second to last play of the game. Archibald was taken to the hospital by his parents as a precaution... Thirty-seven penalties were called against both teams. McMaster was penalized 18 times while Queen’s was called a total of 19 times. Game day attendance was 3,684. - Bill Miklas, Queen's Sports Information
DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN; GAELS RALLY FOR THIRD GAME IN A ROW
By Claude Scilley, Kingston Whig Standard
They're a tease, these Queen's Golden Gaels. For the third time this year they flirted with an opponent Saturday, leading the McMaster Marauders on, making them believe they had a chance to win a football game. Then the Gaels turned cold, scoring touchdowns on back-to-back drives barely four minutes apart in the fourth quarter, jilting their guests into a 24-20 defeat.
These Gaels are 3-0 to start a season for the first time since 2003 yet even in so doing they've toyed with the emotions of their fans as well, tantalizing them with splendid displays of football yet frustrating them by wrapping that brilliance in layers of mediocrity.
Don't look for a simple explanation. "It's the same story every week. We get down by two touchdowns and we start to come alive," said Queen's back Mike Giffin, who scored all of his team's touchdowns Saturday but was at a loss to understand the phenomenon. "It's unbelievable," he said. "I don't know what it is. I couldn't explain it."
The Gaels have scored 17 points in the first half of their three games this year. They finally scored a touchdown in the first half Saturday, but apparently were so startled by doing so they botched the convert. They've trailed every one of their games at halftime, in two of them they were behind entering the fourth quarter. On the other hand, the Gaels have outscored the opposition 29-7 in the final period, the only touchdown against them coming Saturday after they fumbled a punt on their own eight-yard line on the final play of the third quarter.
Are the Gaels more fit than the rest? Are they responding to a sense of urgency? Do they learn things and adapt as the game progresses? "I couldn't say it like that," Giffin said. "I'd say we should be a little more prepared in the first quarter. "We don't have to keep it so exciting for people."
Queen's coach Pat Sheahan said football is a game of momentum. "I know it's a much-used explanation for the way things seem to go," he said, "but when your team is believing, it's better, there's no question about it."
Though they still trailed on the scoreboard, the Gaels essentially won Saturday's game in the third quarter. Though down 13-9, Queen's chose to start the second half playing into a stiff wind blowing out of the northwest. "Normally when you're behind you're going to take the wind," Sheahan said. "Because the game was close, our strategy was to go out and defend the wind in the third quarter." Confident the defence would keep the score close, Sheahan reasoned the wind would help his team catch up, if necessary, in the fourth. The strategy worked. The Marauders failed to score in the third quarter and they even played into Queen's hands at one point, consuming almost six minutes with a drive that started at their own nine-yard line but died at the McMaster 45.
The Marauders eventually did score again. Mark Surya fumbled a punt on his own eight-yard line and on the very next play, Adam Archibald threw a touchdown pass to Rob Serviss, making the visitors' lead 20-9. For the third game in a row, however, the Gaels answered a potentially devastating touchdown with a score of their own, moving 68 yards in six plays. McMaster was two-and-out on its next possession and on its next drive Queen's scored again, advancing 57 yards in five plays. In less than four minutes, the Gaels went from trailing by 11 to leading by three. As this was happening, Sheahan said the mood shift on the sideline was palpable. "The emotions are definitely involved," Sheahan said. "You felt it. [McMaster] looked like they were sputtering. It looked like it was all uphill for them in the fourth quarter. Then the punts don't seem to go as far, and that's when a guy breaks a tackle. "When you've got a back like Giffin, he doesn't go down on an arm tackle. He gets better as the game goes on."
Typically, though, Queen's couldn't sustain the brilliance. After another defensive stand, a punt into the wind and a no-yards penalty gave Queen's the ball on the McMaster 26, the Gaels settled for a punt single four plays and 30 yards of penalties later.
The Queen's defence took over, however. The Marauders' last threat ended with two tackles behind the line of scrimmage and an intercepted pass in the final two minutes of the game.
McMaster coach Stefan Ptaszek admitted his team didn't take advantage of the wind in the third quarter as it should have. "We got away with it at the end [when] they dropped the punt," he said. "At 20-9 heading into the fourth, I thought our defence was playing well and our offence could put up a few more points but they had the short field and ... it's downhill when you get the short field and the wind. "Queen's executed and took their game to a different level in the fourth quarter, which is what teams need to do."
Gaels 24, McMaster 20
Queen's: Three TDs by Mike Giffin, two on passes from Danny Brannagan, including a 74-yard screen pass in the second quarter; Dan Village kicks a 24-yard FG. McMaster: Adam Archibald throws for both TDs, to Ugonna Ihekwoaba and Rob Serviss; Paolo Faiazza boots FGs of 33 and 16 yards.
The game: No. 10 Queen's leads 9-0 midway through the second quarter but ninth-ranked McMaster scores 13 points in seven minutes for a 13-9 halftime lead; a fumbled punt on the Queen's eight-yard line leads to a TD that gives the Marauders a 20-9 lead on the first play of the fourth quarter. And then: Queen's scores on its next two possessions, less than four minutes apart, to take the lead for good.
Impact: Gaels are 3-0 for only the second time since 1991; they've won six of their last seven dating to last year, with four of those wins coming over nationally ranked opponents.
Mike Giffin: Has his third straight 100-yard rushing day (115 yards) and catches four passes for 93 more.
All photos are Copyright (c) Jeff Chan 2007, but may be used for personal non-commercial use, or by Queen's University or the Vanier Cup with appropriate photo credit, unless otherwise authorized.
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