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Homecoming cures the Blues

Sunday, October 2, 2005

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Written by Karen Zuccala

A visit from the University of Toronto Blues (0-5) was exactly what the hometown Guelph Gryphons (1-4) needed to get their playoff hopes back on track. A Homecoming crowd of 4121 came out to see the 58-30 Gryphon win.

It was a day to remember for Guelph native Justin Dunk, the Gryphons' rookie quarterback who was making his second OUA start, and first before friends and family at home. Dunk played with confidence and enthusiasm, completing 16-23 passes for an impressive 280 yards, 3 touchdowns, and no interceptions before being replaced by Matt Bryans late in the fourth quarter.

More importantly, Dunk's athleticism and crisp passing seemed to energize a Gryphon offense marked by an inability to consistently move the ball this season. Gryphons receiver Jeff Keegan had a breakout game with 8 receptions for 195 yards and 2 touchdowns, while receiver Dave McKoy caught 4 passes for 96 yards and 2 touchdowns to go with a 47 yard punt return on special teams.

Guelph's air game was complimented by another impressive performance from rookie running back Brad Crawford, who ran for 128 yards and one touchdown. It was the second time in his first three career starts that Crawford has run for over 100 yards.

The Gryphon's offensive line protected their quarterback well, not allowing
a sack, and giving Dunk all sorts of time to work out of the pocket. In all, Guelph exploded for 671 total offensive yards, far above their OUA worst 287 yards per game average over their first four games.

Toronto's offense was led by tailback Marc Gaudett's 177 yards on 25 carries, with two touchdowns. Blues quarterback Mark Stinson completed 15-30 passes for 230 yards, including two touchdown passes to receiver Cory Kennedy, who had 6 receptions for 108 yards in total on the day. The aggressive play of Kakra Kusi-Achampong was a high point for Toronto, with the defensive back notching 8 tackles and 4 assists.

Guelph won't have long to savour the win, with powerhouse McMaster (3-2)coming to town next Saturday. The Gryphons invite members of the Guelph Community to attend. The Grey Cup and XBOX tour will be onsite and up-and-coming Guelph singer, Amy Nodwell, will perform at half-time.

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