The Lacombe Pee Wee Explosion didn’t quite have enough firepower to take the provincial title.
On Saturday evening, the Explosion fell to the Lloydminster Colts 24-8 at MEGlobal Field in Lacombe during the Football Alberta final, marking their first and only loss of what was an otherwise perfect season.
The difference, according to Head Coach Garner Kolybaba, was big players and big plays from the Colts, and a little less scoring prowess from the Explosion than they’re used to.
“It was not quite what we expected. They’re a good team. They’re well coached and they executed very well today,” he said. “Offensively, we were not 100 per cent because they were so well coached and played a really good game.”
They started on the right note, taking an 8-0 lead in the second on a touchdown by Max Smith, followed by a Nathan Bendera conversion. However, the Colts got back into the game on a series of large offensive gains and long runs. By the end of the third quarter, the Explosion were down 14-8.
Still within striking distance of tying the game, the team didn’t quit, but conceded a safety early in the fourth quarter to get the ball out of their own zone, and closer to scoring themselves. However, it would be all for naught as 30 seconds later, the Colts #88 would make a 60-yard-run to put his team ahead 24-8
They would ultimately be unable to generate any further offence, and the Colts would come out of the game as the provincial champions.
Despite the loss, however, there was no shame in the team’s performance.
“We had some good shining moments from some of veterans. Devin (Allarie) was fantastic, Braydon (Goertz) got some nice balls away and Adnesse (Pannenbecker) was there,” he said. “The kids learned a lot this year. Aside from the score, they just never quit. They played hard football the best they could and played their hearts out and that’s all we could ever ask.”
Despite the loss, the Explosion have a solid foundation to build on after winning the Central league championship last weekend. Kolybaba said they’ll have a good mix of Atom players coming up, and returning players.
“I think it’ll be a good year for whoever is back with us next year,” he said. “We set a good standard for our guys – now we have to match it next year.”