On the road in McMahon Stadium this Friday night, the UBC Thunderbirds (2–3) triumphed over the University of Calgary Dinos (0–5), in a matchup between Canada West’s bottom two teams. UBC attained their second win of the season through effective performances on all fronts of the game, with a particularly productive running attack led by running backs Isaiah Knight and Lucas Mastrodomenico.
UBC dominated from the beginning of the game, with a strong opening drive — kept alive by a third-down conversion from Mastrodomenico — culminating in a 5-yard TD-run by Knight. Despite two combined interceptions from UBC quarterbacks Garrett Rooker and Derek Engel, the Thunderbirds would maintain their lead for the remainder of the game.
The T-Birds found the end zone in all four quarters for a final winning score of 39–29, UBC’s highest-scoring game of the season.
With 13 seconds left in the first half, Mastrodomenico capped off an 8-play drive with a 1-yard TD-run, extending UBC’s lead to 18–9. Late in the third, Rooker connected with receiver Jason Soriano for an impressive 87-yard TD-pass, bringing the score to 27–16. Calgary’s defence soon responded with a 58-yard pick-six by Matthew Lucyshyn, making it a one-score game at 27–22.
In the fourth quarter, the T-Birds only reinforced their lead with another running touchdown by Mastrodomenico and a successful 42-yard field goal by Kieran Flannery-Fleck. The Dinos fought valiantly to the end, hitting the end zone with only 15 seconds left to play, but they ultimately could not pull off the comeback.
The win is a vital change for the Thunderbirds, who need to turn things around soon if they hope to make the playoffs. They are now tied for fourth in the Canada West conference with the University of Manitoba Bisons (2–3).
The T-Birds enter their bye week on a high note and with the hopes and talent to save their season. On October 15, they will face the Manitoba Bisons at home in what looks to be a pivotal matchup.