Regina Thunder celebrates ‘storybook’ victory over the Saskatoon Hills
A late TD pass from quarterback Zenon Orobko to Isaiah Woodley made the difference on Saturday as the Thunder edged the Hilltops 30-27.
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Despite an injury to starting quarterback Carter Shewchuk, the Regina Thunder came back strong for a win over the wire that greatly increased their chances of dethroning the Saskatoon Hilltops and finishing first in the PFC.
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A 36-yard touchdown pass from No.2 caller Zenon Orobko to Isaiah Woodley with 1:14 left in the fourth quarter proved to be the difference as the Thunder posted a spectacular three-point victory over their rival Hilltops for the second Saturday in a row.
A week earlier, Eric Maximuik’s 51-yard field goal in the final game gave Regina a 16-13 road victory and ended Saskatoon’s winning streak in 33 games. Then Orobko and Woodley achieved their feats as Regina won 30-27 at Mosaic Stadium and improved to 4-4. Saskatoon, winner of the last six PFC and CJFL titles, fell to 2-2.
“It’s a storybook – it really is,” said Orobko, whose father Pat is an ex-Hilltop. “We can’t do anything better than that. “
Orobko took over behind center after Shewchuk suffered an injury to his right shoulder, which is not considered serious, at the end of the third quarter. Regina was leading 23-20 at the time.
Saskatoon quickly took a 27-23 lead when Damon Dutton found Ethan Godson for a 38-yard touchdown pass.
Without Shewchuk, the Thunder’s offense missed all the way to final possession – a scorching run in seven games and 89 yards.
Regina was in a first and 25 position when Rylan Sokul made a spectacular catch along the straight sideline for a 42-yard lead. Woodley scored three games later.
“I don’t think I scored a touchdown,” said Woodley. “I think we as a team scored a touchdown.”
Hutton then moved the Hilltops 52 yards in eight games before being intercepted in the end zone by Justin Mckerracher with seven seconds remaining, punctuating a classic game.
“These two teams love to play against each other,” said Hilltops head coach Tom Sargeant, “and they bring out the best in each other.”
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