The Champlain Cougars opened the 2015 RSEQ Division 1 season Friday night with a 25-14 victory over CEGEP Limoilou of Quebec City in a contest played under the lights at Coulter Field.
“It was good for the first game of the season,” head coach Jean-Francois Joncas said in a Sunday morning interview. “There were a lot of penalties which can be expected in the first game of the season. I had a chance to look at the game film and there are a lot of mistakes that we can correct.”
The veteran coach added that the flow of the game was affected by his club’s inexperience.
“We have two rookies starting at defensive back and although many of our receivers are in the second year, they were starting for the first time.”
As a result the chemistry between starting quarterback Michael Arruda and the receiving corps left something to be desired.
“You could see sometimes the Michael was holding on to the ball a little longer than usual because he wasn’t sure where the receiver was going,” Joncas explained.
“In our offence the receiver has to make adjustments according to the defence and it was obvious that the quarterback and receivers weren’t always on the same page. It is something that we will correct.”
Despite those problems Arruda, last year’s Cougar offensive player of the year, still managed to throw three touchdown passes.
“The defence did a good job of stuffing their running game,” Joncas said. “We have to make corrections and that is normal after a first game but it is also better to make those corrections when you are 1-0 and not 0-1.”
The Cougars are back in action this Friday when they host the Edouard-Montpetit Lynx, coached by former Bishop’s Gaiter defensive co-ordinator Marc Loranger.
The Lynx opened their season on a losing note as they dropped a 42-7 decision to Notre Dame-de-Foy. In other Division 1 action Lévis-Lauzon crushed F-X Garneau 69-30, Montmorency upset Vanier 28-27 and Vieux Montréal got past André-Grasset 21-16.
Champlain Game Stats
Touchdowns: Lessard-Vézina, Pivin, Oboo
Converts: Blanchard 3
Field goals: Blanchard
Passing: Arruda 15-33, 274 yds, 3 TD, 1 int.
Receiving: Pivin 9-214, Oboo 3-24, Conraud-Arès 2-35, Boisvert 1-1.
Rushing: Lessard-Vézina 18-81, Arruda 5-49, Conraud-Arès 2-7, Pivin 1-0.
Def.: McCallum 7 tkl, S. Brodrique 2 int, Cimankinda 2 sacks.