North Langley Bears fall in B.C. football final

It’ll take a while for the sting to subside, after they lost 36-0 to the North Delta Longhorns in the BC Community Football Association’s 12-man peewee division championship.

But the North Langley Bears did have a fantastic season, that ended Saturday on a stlick McLeod Stadium turf that was painted white from the previous night’s snowfall.

During the day, teams competed for the provincial title in three of the four age divisions.

The first contest featured the Valley Community Football League peewee titleholder Bears going up against the North Delta Longhorns of the Vancouver Mainland Football League.

A strong North Delta team dominated from the outset, forcing a quick turnover on downs and then scoring on their first possession en route to a big victory.

Playing conditions were less than ideal, as snowfall during the night made footing difficult and at kick-off the temperature was minus six degrees Celcius with a steady wind blowing the length of the field.

Despite the cold, there was only one fumble lost, which occurred on the first play of the fourth quarter.

The North Delta quarterback missed the running back on a pitch-out and the Bears’ Nikkolas Johnson pounced on the ball. But the strong Longhorn defence prevented North Langley from capitalizing on the turnover.

Another stand-out play by North Langley’s defence came on the last play of the first half. Up 22-0, the Longhorns were threatening again with the ball at the North Langley 11 yard line. The quarterback kept to the left, but Brandon Folkerts chased him to the sideline and, while diving, brought him down by the ankle.

Twice in the second half the Bears forced a turnover on downs, once after Connor Bernardin and Chris Morrison teamed up to take down the ball-carrier for a loss.

Tackles for North Langley were also registered by Jacob Deibert, Callum Middleton, Shaun Brynjolfson, Mathieu Gale, Jacob Evans, Marcus Stang, and Nicolas Reimer.

The North Langley offence struggled to make any headway against the much larger Longhorns.

The biggest spark for the Bears came in the first quarter on their second possession. On third down and five at their own 45 yard line, from the slot Caleb Faust took a hand off from quarterback Jordan Williams, swept left, cut through a hole, and headed downfield.

A fleet-footed Longhorn defender caught up and hauled him down at the North Delta 17. The 48-yard gain provided the Bears with their sole earned first down and red zone possession of the game, but three plays later the Longhorns took over on downs.

With that run, Faust pushed his rushing total for the season to over 500 yards.

The game sportsmanship award for the Bears went to Callum Middleton, while the North Langley player of the game was Marcus Stang, who carried the ball 14 times.

The counterpart for the North Delta Longhorns was Adam Hoegg, who scored three majors, the last one coming on a 64-yard run in the fourth quarter. Fellow Longhorn running back Xavier Cole added two of his own, along with three successful point-after-touchdown kicks to account for the rest of the scoring.

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