The University of Saskatchewan Huskies are going back to the playoffs.
After a one-year absence, the program’s first since 2000, the Huskies are headed back to the Canada West football post-season after a gritty 27-4 win over the University of Manitoba Bisons Saturday at Griffiths Stadium.
Defence on both sides of the ball owned the first half.
After an opening drive that ended at midfield for the Huskies, it was the Bisons marching down the field to threaten for a touchdown in the game’s opening minutes.
The Huskies defence stood tall on its own goal line as they stopped a fullback run up the middle and a pitch to the outside before an illegal participation penalty wiped a touchdown off the board for Manitoba thanks to the one-of-a-kind curved endzone at Griffiths Stadium.
Bisons quarterback Des Catellier made a completed a sure pass to Macho Bockru, but stepping out of bounds during his route nullified the play, forcing his team to kick for the field goal.
The Bisons followed up with a goal-line stand of their own inside the three-minute warning, as the Huskies elected to try three separate hand-offs but were unable to convert.
However, it wasn’t of any worry to Saskatchewan as linebacker Tom Whiting sacked the Catellier in the endzone for a safety on the very next play, sending the game to a 4-4 tie at halftime.
Saskatchewan was able to finally end the stalemate as Kyle Siemens left the safety of the pocket for an unusual 42-yard scamper before tossing an eight-yard touchdown to Tyler Chow.
Chow became the only person on the field to gain sizable yards from the line of scrimmage in a game that was aggressive right from the first kick.
Him and the rest of the Huskies offence converted a touchdown on a five-minute drive in the fourth quarter that started from their own 13-yard line.
Chow bulled his way into the endzone from three yards out to end the nine-play drive.
After Catellier was knocked out of the game during a sack, backup Bisons quarterback Jamie Ybarra botched the shotgun snap and lost the ball to Tristian Kronkiewicz for a 39-yard scoop-and-score with 2:26 left on the clock.
Saskatchewan wraps up its regular season with a game against the University of Regina Rams next week at Mosaic Stadium.