Cardinal Carter punishes Bulldogs in season opener


By Joel Charron

A statement was made in the General Amherst Sr. football team’s season opener, but it wasn’t the Bulldogs who made it.

The Cardinal Carter Cougars bulldozed  Amherst 34-14 Thursday afternoon in Leamington.

“It’s obvious that we are not as strong after losing 20 veterans from our roster,” said head coach John Rudak.

The season opener against the Cougars was a rematch of last season’s semi Wilson conference semi-final and was thought of by the returning Amherst players has as a way to get some redemption, however the only thing Amherst got was a butt whooping.

After giving up a big play to Cardinal Carter on the opening drive, Amherst Duncan Scott snagged an errant Cougar pass for Amherst’s first interception of the year.

The Bulldogs marched down to the Cardinal Carter’s one-yard line but were kept out of the end zone on three consecutive plays.

Just a few snaps later, an interception by Matt Rosati gave Amherst the ball on the Cougars 30 yard line.

Todd Girard put up the games first points on a 27-yard pass from Max Reiner on a fake field goal attempt, however missed the point after.


Amherst running back Hayden Martin uses a stiff arm to send a Cardinal Carter defender to the ground.

On Cardinal Carter’s opening drive of the second quarter, the Cougars potent running attack sliced through the Amherst defense and ultimately smashing into the end zone on a five-yard run by Matt Guyer.  The score remained 6-6 after Cardinal Carter couldn’t convert their point after.

Cardinal Carter transformed an Amherst turnover into a one-yard Gayer score   and led 13-6 and added a single point before the quarter ended and led 14-6.

In the third quarter the Cougars looked poised to score again until Silas Cipkar intercepted a pass and returned it 109 yard for the major. The Bulldogs converted their two-point attempt and tied the game at 14-14.

But that would be as good as it got for the Bulldogs.

Cardinal Carter exploited the poor Amherst rush defense, running for a four-yard and a 45-yard touchdown by Gayer.

Late in the fourth quarter the Cougars added a nine-yard touchdown pass for a 34-14 win.

“Our defense wasn’t the best today, I thought we were better than that, but what can I say,” said Cipkar.

Cipkar said despite the loss the Bulldogs will hold their heads high.

“We’ll get better over the season,” he said.

Rudak said he is going to have to start developing the offensive and defensive packages, as they are currently “very basic.”

Rudak added the defensive backs are going to have to learn to “stay home,” as often times they were found chasing the ball carrier instead of dropping into zone coverage.

“Their angles are off, the timing is off and they have to learn,” said Rudak. “The physical part of the game is there, the thinking part isn’t there yet, but I think we can mold both into something good.”

Rudak said the one aspect of his squad game he did like was the punting game.

“Rosati was tremendous today,” said Rudak. “He was punting the ball a long way down the field.”

It doesn’t get any easier for the Bulldogs in the next game as they host the Holy Name Knights next Thursday at 3 p.m. at Centennial Park.

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