LONDON, Ont. - Saint Mary's kicker Brett Lauther was perfect on five field goal attempts as the East prevailed 24-16 in the 10th edition of the East West Bowl at TD Waterhouse Stadium on the campus of Western University, Saturday afternoon.
The winning side featured three members of the McGill Redmen - OL Robert Ravensbergen of Montreal, LB Tyler Lavin of Nanaimo, B.C., and LB Joffrey Gorin, a native of Barbados - in addition to McGill head coach Clint Uttley, who served as an assistant coach for the East.
It marked the third consecutive win for the East team at the annual event, presented by Under Armour, which showcases CIS players who are eligible for the following year's Canadian Football League draft. The West, which won the first five confrontations from 2003 to 2007, still leads the all-time series 6-4.
Lauther, a 2011 AUS all-star from Truro, N.S., connected from 16, 14, 32, 20 and 16 yards out, and also converted the game's only touchdown, a 27-yard run by Acadia's Zack Skibin that made it 19-8 for the East one minute and 44 seconds into the third quarter.
Rounding out the scoring for the winners was Montreal defensive lineman David Ménard, who sacked Manitoba quarterback Khaleal Williams in the end zone for a safety only eight seconds after Skibin's major.
The score was tied 6-6 after the opening quarter. The East led 12-8 at halftime and 24-10 after three periods.
For the West, Western's Lirim Hajrullahu of St. Catharines, Ont., was a perfect 4-for-4 on field goal attempts as he split the uprights from 31, 29, 17 and 31 yards out. The losing side added four points on a pair of safeties.
The East had the edge in most statistical categories including first downs (24 to 23), total offensive yards (426 to 333), rushing yards (195 to 183) and passing yards (262 to 173).
Laval's Tristan Grenon started at quarterback for the East and completed eight of 15 passes for a game-high 172 yards, with one interception. Queen's Billy McPhee was 8-of-16 for 90 yards. Laval teammates Yannick Morin-Plante and Seydou Junior Haïdara both finished with four receptions for 47 yards, while Montreal's Rotrand Sené was the East's top rusher with 77 yards on seven carries.
St. Francis Xavier linebacker Brett Hubbeard led a strong defensive effort for the winners with a match-high 9.5 tackles, including 1.5 for losses. Sherbrooke defensive back Patrick Chénard was second on the team with 6.5 tackles, including 1.5 behind the line of scrimmage.
For the West, starting pivot Khaleal Williams went 9-of-17 for 31 yards. Windsor's Austin Kennedy had the best statistics among all quarterbacks on the day as he was good on 18 of 23 attempts for 142 yards, while leading all players in the contest with 89 ground yards on 10 rushes. He was intercepted once.
Calgary running back Steven Lumbala caught eight balls for 15 yards and added 65 yards on 13 carries. McMaster linebacker Ben D'Aguilar was a force on defence in the losing effort with
6.5 tackles, including a sack.
Hajrullahu opened the scoring for the West after 5:31 of play thanks to a 31-yard field goal and made it 6-0 only 59 seconds later thanks to a 29-yard kick.
Lauther put the East on the board at 7:45 with a 16-yarder and tied the affair on the last play of the opening frame with a 14-yard chip shot.
The East took its first lead of the afternoon 10:11 into the second quarter when Lauther hit from 32 yards out. Following a West safety at 12:49, Lauther booted his fourth field goal of the contest - a 20-yarder - with 33 seconds remaining in the half to send his troops to the locker room with a 12-8 advantage.
Back from the break, the East exploded for nine points in the first two minutes, thanks to Skibin's TD run and Ménard's sack for a safety.
A West safety at 9:45 made it 21-10 but Lauther responded with his fifth and final field goal, from 16 yards out, with 1:55 to go in the third for a 24-10 East advantage after 45 minutes of play.
Hajrullahu rounded out the scoring in the fourth with a 17-yard field goal at 5:00 and a 31-yarder at 10:11.
GAME NOTES: Western was hosting the event for the fourth straight year... The contest was previously held at McMaster (2008), Laval (2007, 2006) and Wilfrid Laurier (2005, 2004, 2003)... The East team was comprised of players representing schools from the Atlantic and Quebec conferences, as well as from Queen's, Ottawa and Toronto, while the West squad was made up of players from Canada West and from the remaining OUA universities... Stefan Ptaszek from reigning Vanier Cup champion McMaster and Glen Constantin from 2011 CIS finalist Laval were the West and East head coaches, respectively.
All-time East West Bowl results:
2012 (at Western): East 24, West 16
2011 (at Western): East 34, West 27 (OT)
2010 (at Western): East 12, West 9
2009 (at Western): West 16, East 7
2008 (at McMaster): East 25, West 12
2007 (at Laval): West 22, East 19 (OT)
2006 (at Laval): West 34, East 26 (OT)
2005 (at Laurier): West 34, East 16
2004 (at Laurier): West 21, East 12
2003 (at Laurier): West 10, East 5
SCORING SUMMARY: 2012 EAST WEST BOWL
EAST 6-6-12-0: 24
WEST 6-2-2-6: 16
WEST - FG Lirim Hajrullahu 31 5:31
WEST - FG Lirim Hajrullahu 29 6:30
EAST - FG Brett Lauther 16 7:45
EAST - FG Brett Lauther 14 15:00
EAST - FG Brett Lauther 32 10:11
WEST - Safety Team (McPhee conceded in end zone) 12:49
EAST - FG Brett Lauther 20 14:27
EAST - TD Zack Skibin 27 run (Lauther kick) 1:44
EAST - Safety Team (Williams sacked in end zone) 1:52
WEST - Safety Team (McPhee conceded in end zone) 9:45
EAST - FG Brett Lauther 16 13:05
WEST - FG Lirim Hajrullahu 17 5:00
WEST - FG Lirim Hajrullahu 31 10:11
For more information, contact:
CIS: (613) 447-6334
belanger [at] universitysport.ca