By Medicine Hat News on November 9, 2019.
For the first time in four years, the Crescent Heights Vikings are back in the provincial football playoff hunt.
Even better, they’re at home, hungry for a win and facing an opponent that lucked in to its spot.
“The guys are excited, it’s the first provincial playoff game we’ve played in for a couple years now so our guys are feeling pretty good,” said Viking coach Sean Davis prior to his team’s last practice at the Methanex Bowl Friday afternoon. “They are focused though, they know exactly what needs to happen.”
Crescent Heights hosts Airdrie’s W.H. Croxford Cavaliers Saturday, 2:30 p.m. in an Alberta Tier 3 quarter-final. The opponent was supposed to be Calgary’s Rundle College, but they bizarrely pulled themselves out leaving the unranked Cavs – 2-4 in their league this season – a chance at what would certainly be an upset over Medicine Hat’s fifth-ranked Vikes.
Davis’ team has picked up the pieces from a 44-7 Rangeland Football Conference final loss to Hat High Oct. 25 and is eager to make some noise on home turf. They practised through Tuesday’s snowstorm, are ready for more bad weather and whatever the visitors have ready for them.
“They’re not coming down here for us to wail on them. We anticipate they’re going to play their best game and we have to play our best,” said Davis. “They’re a really strong running team, they have a very strong tailback and quarterback combination. If we can shut down the run we’ll have a very good chance to win.”
Featuring RFC defensive player of the year Brian Davies, an offence highlighted by the play of Tony Simmons and a team that went 6-3, Crescent Heights has reason to be optimistic. The last time the team played a provincial playoff game was 2015, and they’re clearly a team on the rise.
“We got it handed to us in the RFC championship game, it’s left a bit of a bitter taste in our mouth understandably,” said Davis. “We’ve got a chance to play someone in our tier, let everybody in the province know exactly who we are and exactly what we’re about, and show how we really play. We’re all really looking forward to that.”
If they can move forward to the semifinals, things will get a lot tougher. Cochrane has won the Alberta Tier 3 title five years in a row and is again seeded first, beating Winston Churchill 39-7 Friday in a landslide and set to host the south final.
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