If revenge really is a dish best served cold, the Bisons might have preferred something warmer in Saskatoon.
After opening the season with a 43-19 stomping of the University of Saskatchewan Huskies on Aug. 30, the U of M Bisons football team got a taste of its own medicine Friday in a 49-21 loss at Griffiths Stadium.
It did not take long for the Huskies to jump out to a lead as Josh Ewanchyna got the ball over the goal line just over three minutes into the game. Sam Baker then snagged a 15-yard pass from Mason Nyhus to make it 14-0 Saskatchewan in the first quarter.
The Bisons got on the board with a rouge before Colby Kyliuk recovered a fumble for Manitoba and took it to the house to make it 14-8 Huskies at the end of the opening quarter.
A safety followed by a second rouge, this time from Matt Riley, got the herd within three at 14-11 with just over three minutes to go in the first half, but Saskatchewan had other plans.
Adam Machart capped off a Huskies drive with a 15-yard run for the touchdown and, less than 20 seconds later, Saskatchewan recovered the ball. Nyhus found Joseph Trumpy with a five-yard dart, and the Trumpy touchdown gave the Huskies a 28-11 lead near halftime.
To its credit, Manitoba did not exit the half without making some noise.
With 23 seconds left on the clock Bisons quarterback Des Catellier let go of a bomb, finding Trysten Dyce 15 yards down field. The Winnipeg-born receiver got the catch, and the touchdown, to send the herd to the locker room with some momentum with a 28-18 Huskies lead.
Riley opened the second half with a 17-yard field goal to get the herd within a touchdown of tying the game, but this was the last time Manitoba got on the board.
Nyhus let go of a monster 31-yard pass, finding Colton Klassen for the score and 35-21 Saskatchewan lead at the end of the third quarter. Then Machart picked up his second touchdown of the game late in the fourth quarter to make it 42-21, followed less than a minute later by a Keagan White touchdown to give Saskatchewan the 49-21 win.
Manitoba’s usually strong run game was stymied during Friday’s action, kept to just 159 yards compared to Saskatchewan’s 256. Catellier, though, out-threw Nyhus with 271 passing yards off 23 completions, compared to the Huskies quarterback’s 182 yards off 16 completions.
Machart was a major factor in Saskatchewan’s run game, with 219 of the club’s 256 rushing yards, averaging 9.5 yards per attempt to go with his pair of touchdowns.
Brock Gowanlock again had a huge game for Manitoba on the defensive side of the ball, leading his team with nine tackles on the game. Austin Balan led the way for the Bisons in solo tackles with six, while both Shae Weekes and Derek Dufault had each had six tackles on the day.
The loss pushes Manitoba back to .500 at 3-3 on the year heading into the bye week. With the University of Regina Rams and University of British Columbia Thunderbirds both sitting at 1-5 on the season, the herd are still primed for a playoff spot.
Following the bye, the Bisons will be back in action Oct. 19, closing out the home schedule against the University of Calgary Dinos. Kickoff is 2 p.m. CDT.