After dropping their regular-season meeting to the Georgetown Rebels 15-6 back in September, dejected players from the Christ the King Jaguars promised as they walked off the GDHS field that there would be a return matchup, perhaps even for the Halton-area championship held at Hamilton's Ivor Wynne Stadium. The 6-1 Jags came through at their end, grinding out a 20-7 win at St. Thomas Aquinas in Oakville on Wednesday in one of the Halton Secondary School Athletic Association Division II senior football semifinal games. At the same time, undefeated Georgetown was overcaming a 21-14 half-time deficit to knock off defending-champion Burlington Central 35-21. Through the marvel of the cell phone, Rebel players were already aware of next Wednesday's opponent before the final whistle in their hard-fought contest had sounded in front of about 300 spectators in Georgetown. It's the first trip to the Halton final for the Rebels since the mid-1970s and the Jaguars have never made it in that school's relatively short history. "Christ the King is who we wanted to play all along and to have both Georgetown schools in the Halton final is amazing," said Rebels' star running back John Leckie, who rushed for three touchdowns and gained close to 200 yards on the afternoon. "So now after a few years of some bad football around here, we're moving up in the world." Both Leckie and Christ the King coach Mike Harris agreed that the reason for the emergence of the local high school programs comes thanks to the summer-long development youth teams established by the Ontario Minor Football League's Halton Hills Wildcats. Several players from CtK and GDHS were teammates on the Wildcat squad that captured the Ontario Minor Football League's varsity division title in August, and in each of Wednesday's semi-final wins, endurance and experience prevailed, despite muddy and slippery conditions. "A lot of our players were with the Wildcats during the summer and that's why Burlington teams have been so strong over the years, because they have that club system in place," said Harris. "We also had some players who hadn't played before, so when we lost to Georgetown during the season, that was only their second game. Now we've got seven or eight games of experience under our belts and we're looking forward to a good, tough game against Georgetown." See ALL-GEORGETOWN, pg. 27
Continued from pg. 23 The senior Rebels didn't show signs of not having played a meaningful game for almost three weeks as Leckie was able to sustain the opening drive, rushing behind a sturdy offensive line for the first major score. Central's Trojans rallied behind the passing game of quarterback Matt Stepkowski to take the lead at the intermission, but after some adjustments, Georgetown's defence shut down the Trojans from there, keyed by TD interception returns by Andrew Cannell and Darren Pezzack. The Jaguars, meanwhile, fell behind 7-0 to Aquinas on a long pass-and-run play in the second quarter, but CtK's Dan Rovere answered back with a
return for a touchdown on the ensuing kickoff. Quarterback Alex Dezan connected on second-half touchdown pass plays with Doug Lowry and Rovere to secure the result. Alex Bortolotto picked off two Aquinas passes and Zac Fitterer was the team's leading tackler. For several of the senior Rebels, Wednesday's game in Steeltown presents an opportunity for redemption. Two years ago as juniors, GDHS appeared to have the HSSAA title sewn up, but lost to Aldershot at Ivor Wynne on a last-second 35-yard field goal. Officials from both Georgetown schools hope to send several busloads full of spectators down to Hamilton on Wednesday for the 11:30 a.m. kickoff.