The Manitoba Bisons football team locked horns with the Regina Rams on Saturday and emerged with a 49-46 victory. The win helps keep the Bisons’ perfect road record and keeps their cross-province rivals winless on the year.
The herd fell in close games against both the University of British Columbia and Calgary earler in the year, but were able to pull this one out.
Ryan Jones proved to be the hero on the night; his 41-yard field goal late in the fourth quarter was the game winner.
Jones went four for four on the day, his longest being the game-winning kick. He’s only missed four field goals on the year and also has 60 points this season.
Bison pivot Theo Deezar played another solid game, going 29 of 39 and racking up 339 yards. He added four touchdowns as well, and for the second consecutive game he did not throw an interception.
Deezar has thrown 17 touchdowns on the year, placing him in a tie for third-most in the CIS. His 371 yards per game also put him second in that category.
Christie carrying the load
It is well known that the Bisons have a very strong backfield. All three of the running backs possess their own abilities to chew up yards. On Saturday, it was Alex Christie’s moment in the spotlight.
Christie ran for 93 yards on 13 attempts, averaging seven yards per carry. He also caught three balls for 30 yards. The five-foot-nine back out of Thorold, Ont. made a statement on Saturday, carrying the bulk of the load with Jamel Lyles playing only on special teams.
No starters, no problem
Manitoba was playing without four starters on defence, two of them being linebackers – DJ Lalama and Brett MacFarlane. The defence did well adjusting after halftime, allowing only 16 points in the second half.
Mitchell Harrison led the defence with six tackles, and the whole unit got in the game. Fourteen players recorded at least two tackles.
Walker the Swiss Army knife
Jesse Walker had another big game, scoring on both a rushing and receiving play. Walker has scored a major in every game but two so far in 2015.
The rookie made eight grabs for 105 yards, bringing his total up to 463 on the year. Walker also proved to be a threat in the backfield, rushing for 46 yards on three carries. This was his best output on the year from behind the line of scrimmage.
Manitoba now sits in a tie for second in the conference with the UBC Thunderbirds. They are riding a three-game winning streak and will hope to continue their run of form against Alberta this weekend at Investors Group Field.
The last time the Bisons played the Golden Bears, in week four, the herd came out 42-32 victors. The Bears will be looking for revenge, and it should be a key battle in the standings. Alberta are four points behind Manitoba and will hope to gain ground on the herd.