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Article from The Gazette, August 30, 1971
By Bob Morrissey
Short TD Pass Beats Verdun
Quietly Confident - that's how head coach Mike Gibbons feels about his NDG Maple Leafs of the Quebec Junior Football conference.
“We've still got to work on our timing and pass patterns,” said Gibbons after NDG's 8-3 victory over Verdun Invictus last night. “But with the players we've got, if we utilize them properly, I don't think too many teams will beat us.”
One of the main reasons for Gibbons' confidence is his quarterback Uldis Auders. “I think he's the best in junior football,” says the coach.
“He's not a long ball threat, but he's got a good mind, which is even better. He's a lot smarter than me, I know that,” said Mike Smiling.
THAT DID IT
It was a nine-yard pass from Auders to Andy Crowe in the third quarter that provided NDG with its winning margin. Crowe was in for Pete Paliotti, who came close to fighting on the previous play and was taken out by Gibbons.
“Isn't it funny how things sometimes work out,” said Gibbons, shaking his head.
That touchdown and the convert by Bob Duguay gave the Leafs an 8-0 lead, which is how it stayed until the fourth quarter. The Verdun's Acacio Correaria narrowed it with a 30-yard field goal, but it was too little too late. Only five minutes remained in the game.
Last night's game was, more than anything else, a titanic defensive struggle. Neither defence bent much with the result that each team had only about nine first downs.
Mack Rooney, Jim Kerr, Fernando Dicaprio and Peter Brodka were especially strong defensively for NDG. Ted Guest, Rick Hunt and Vic Tyler were among Verdun's standouts.
Offensively, Bernie Muldoon took care of much of NDG's running attack, and did a good, steady job.
“He's quite a guy,” said Gibbons. “You can tell he's dying to play defence, but he sees there's a void in our backfield so he doesn't care. But I think that by playing offence, too, he'll be a better player for the Als for it.”
Kevin Prendergast and Pat Gilead quarterbacked for Verdun and both showed fine passing potential. When the Invictus did anything on offence, usually the pass was responsible. But it was also the pass that hurt Verdun. Two NDG interceptions - by Crowe in the second quarter - and Eric Ford in the third - ended Verdun threats. Verdun's Don Meehan, incidentally, was perhaps the game's outstanding receiver.
Meanwhile in Ottawa, Laval, which tied NDG in its opener over a week ago, trounced Ottawa Capitals 46-13.