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Sabercats return to action at home

Both Sault Sabercats teams are in action on Saturday afternoon at home at Superior Heights
20170527 Sault Sabrecats KA 01
File photo. Kenneth Armstrong/SooToday

It’s an opportunity to build for the Sault Sabercats.

Both the Sabercats junior varsity and varsity teams are coming off Ontario Football Conference victories last weekend on the road against the Vaughan Rebels.

The JV team is looking to improve to 3-1 with a win at home over the Sudbury Gladiators on Saturday afternoon at Superior Heights.

After dropping a 57-21 decision to the Peterborough Wolverines in week one, the JV team has won two-straight, including a 52-21 decision to the Rebels last Sunday afternoon.

At the time, JV Coach Steve Nott spoke of the Sabercats being “a little sloppier than we would have liked right off the bat” falling behind 14-6 early to Vaughan before coming together and breaking out offensively.

Thanks to some big plays offensively, the Sabercats recovered with the help of three rushing touchdowns from Nick Pagnotta, who also caught a pass for a touchdown in the win. With the Sabercats ability to capitalize on big plays, Nott said shorter plays that eat up yards will be key going forward.

“All season, most of our offence comes on long, explosive plays,” Nott said. “The challenge now will be to be more consistent and churn out those four- and five-yard gains in between instead of relying on the 80-yard plays.”

Sudbury also enters action on Saturday with a 2-1 record, which includes wins over the Toronto Jr. Argos in week one and Vaughan in week two. Sudbury dropped a 36-20 decision to Peterborough last weekend.

Kickoff for the JV game is set for 1 p.m.

For the Sabercats varsity team, Saturday’s game against Sudbury, a 4 p.m. start at Superior Heights, will be an opportunity to build on some positives from a 49-2 victory over the Rebels last weekend.

Varsity Coach Matt Premo said a quick start against Vaughan and a quality effort throughout was big for a team that was 0-2 going into the game.

“We scored on our first play from scrimmage and we kept the momentum going from there,” Premo said. “We played great all around. It was really nice to see everything come together.”

Quarterback Ryan Yost is coming off a strong performance against the Rebels that saw him throw for five touchdowns.”

“He’s done if before but he’s never had the opportunity to get a lot of snaps in practice and now he’s getting a lot of snaps and the opportunity to have the starter role and he’s really taken advantage of it.”

Premo called the game against Vaughan a must-win game going forward.

“It will mean a lot for the momentum going up against Sudbury,” Premo said.

Sudbury enters Saturday’s game with a 2-1 record and on the heels of a 32-14 home loss to Peterborough last weekend.