Bergeron, Mason, score TDs, in 13-6 win, as Hawks survive late Red Storm surge
Sunday, November 4, 2018
By Rob J. Ross
LONDON, ON. - Zephyr Hatch was a master of calming the Red Storm.
The St. Thomas Hawks' linebacker made two of likely the team's best defensive plays of the year, helping the Hawks hold off Red Storm, 13-6, to capture the Atom championship for the London Minor Football Association, at City Wide Fields.
First, in the final minute of second quarter, Hatch picked the perfect time to have his first pick, intercepting a Red Storm pass mid field.
"When he was running I saw the quarterback look at him and throw the ball at him," Hatch said. "The wind kind of pushed the ball more in front of him, so I got in front of him and caught the ball. Then I ran (gaining 15 yards).
Hatch returned for the game saving play in the dying seconds of the fourth quarter.
Number 10, a weapon all game for Red Storm, shook two tackles and started breaking down the sidelines. But Hatch darted out of nowhere and forced the Red Storm ball carrier out of bounds as time expired.
"I got really excited," said Hatch, who after the tackle, jumped up and ran towards his teammates celebrating.
Kolton Bergeron gave the Hawks a 6-0 lead on a TD run.
Mason Glover ripped off a 50 yard run to the end zone in the second quarter. Glover then caught a two point convert pass from Bergeron, putting the Hawks up, 13-0.
"It was a reverse and it was really tiring because I was sprinting my hardest. I got good blocks from my teammates and that led me to the touchdown," said Glover. "We weren't sure if they (Red Storm) were going to comeback or we would take it home. But I'm glad we took it home because this is my first championship.
"It feels super good. I've been playing for four years (two years tyke, two years atom) and never won. "
Logan Mellow put Red Storm on the board with a fourth quarter TD.
"We told them (players) all week this wouldn't be won in the first, second or third, that it would be won in the fourth. They're going to score, punish us and push us to the limit. We had to keep fighting until the final whistle," Hawks' head coach Andrew Walker said. "We executed and we tackled as a group. Every time one of their players had the ball, there were two, three, four Hawks draping all over him. We ran to the ball well on defence. We fought on offence. We pushed and scrapped for every yard."
The Hawks had a late third quarter TD called back due to a penalty.
Leading 13-0, Walker admitted to calling a risky play that resulted in a Red Storm interception.
"Sometimes I'm a gambler,' laughed Walker. "We had an interception in the fourth quarter and that was on me. I gambled a little bit."
The Hawks finish the overall season with seven wins and just one loss, a 20-18 squeaker to the Cobras. For the regular season, the Hawks were number two in offence behind the Cobras and tied the Panthers, for least points allowed.
"The strength of the team is we just stick together and never give up. We always do stuff as a team," said Glover, a Grade six student at Mitchell Hepburn elementary school. "Every player helps. Our line does the blocks. Our receivers do blocks. Every game we've won as a team because we couldn't win a game with just one person."
For Hawks' football, it is back to back seasons capturing a LMFA title, after winning the peewee division a year ago.
The Panthers dumped Red Storm, 22-6, in this year's peewee final, while the Rams doubled up on the Panthers, 42-21, in the Tyke final.