It was a rowdy and packed crowd in University Stadium Sept. 24 to celebrate Laurier’s homecoming and to watch two football teams who are heading in opposite directions. The Waterloo Warriors entered the Saturday afternoon bout winless on the season with a record of 0-4, while the Laurier Golden Hawks have been undefeated through three games.
The directions would not change as the Golden Hawks steamrolled over the Warriors winning the game in front of their home crowd with a final score of 68-7.
During the first drive of the game, Laurier got two quick stops forcing the Warriors to punt while deep in their own zone. Waterloo kicker Caleb Girard was unable to properly secure the snap and was tackled at the Warriors’ three-yard line, resulting in a turnover in favour of the Golden Hawks. Laurier running back Eric Guiltinan easily ran the ball in for the touchdown. This sequence set the tone for the rest of the first half.
On the ensuing Waterloo drive, the Laurier defence did not let the Warriors earn a first down and forced a safety. On the kick return, Laurier receiver Kurleigh Gittens Jr. ran the ball for 42 yards and was taken down by a facemask, the resulting penalty gave the Golden Hawks an additional 15 yards which put them in the Warriors’ 35-yard line. After a 14-yard pass to Gittens, Guiltinan ran the ball for another 21 yards resulting in a touchdown, his second of the day.
The Golden Hawks did not take their foot off the gas pedal on both the offensive and defensive end. Laurier was eventually able to score five more touchdowns and force another safety before the end of the first half, while also completely shutting down the Warriors’ offence. At the end of two quarters, Laurier was firmly winning 55-0.
With Waterloo’s steep mountain to climb entering the second half, Laurier head coach Michael Faulds opted to rest Guiltinan and some of his other starters for the remainder of the game. Waterloo was able to stop the bleeding as they held the Golden Hawks to only two points in the third quarter but they still could not get the offence going and were unable to score any points.
Waterloo was finally able to find the end zone in the fourth quarter at the 6:35 mark when quarterback AJ Stewart was able to connect with wide receiver Tyler Ternowski on three separate occasions, resulting in the pair teaming up for 90 total yards and a touchdown all in one drive. Laurier was also able to tack on a few more points in the fourth quarter, which eventually led to the final score of 68-7 in favour of Laurier.
This loss gives the men’s football team a record of 0-5, placing them at the bottom of the OUA standings. Meanwhile, Laurier stays perfect for the season with a 4-0 record and sits at the top of the OUA standings.
Laurier’s defence contained Waterloo to only 17 rushing yards and a total of 182 yards for the game. Ternowski was the lone bright spot, as he finished the game making four catches for 133 yards. Despite only playing the first half, Guiltinan was still able to finish with 176 yards on only 14 carries and four touchdowns. He leads the OUA in average rushing yards per game at 160.5.
This young Warriors team hopes to earn their first win of the season Oct. 1 when they face the 1-3 Queen’s Gaels on Warrior Field.