Emmitt Rosati

Bulldogs improve to 6-0 with shutout win vs. Riverside



By Ron Giofu


Six games, six wins for the General Amherst Bulldogs senior football team.

However, the most recent win wasn’t one of their prettiest.

The Bulldogs defeated Riverside 21-0 last Thursday night in a game played at Tecumseh Vista Academy. The game was scoreless at the half with General Amherst being stopped twice on third down plays in addition to turning the ball over three times in the half.

General Amherst’s Canyon Gooder (59) and Cole Brown (57) pursue the Riverside quarterback.

The offense got going in the third quarter when Emmitt Rosati and Brayden LeClerc each scored touchdowns, both of them being 11-yard runs. Levi Reaume added the Bulldogs’ third touchdown of the second half with a two-yard run in the fourth quarter.

LeClerc believed they came out “flat footed” in the first half and didn’t play as well as they are capable of.

“We focused more. We were more motivated in the second half,” he said. “We brought the sauce.”

The offensive line blocked well and allowed him to get the touchdown, LeClerc added, believing the line is playing well this season.

As for the 6-0 start, LeClerc said “it feels good, especially since we didn’t get a win last year.”

General Amherst head coach John Rudak said he spoke with his Riverside counterpart with the belief was that the Rebels had their best half of the season in last Thursday night’s football game. Rudak said it showed in their performance.

“They came out to play,” he said.

Calvin Cribley returns a punt for General Amherst during the Bulldogs’ 21-0 win over Riverside Oct. 25.

The three first half turnovers were “very costly,” said Rudak, and helped change momentum. However, the Bulldogs were able to take over in the second half.

“As the game wore on, we wore them down,” said Rudak, crediting the offensive and defensive lines.

“We had great lateral pressure from our linebackers and safeties to stop their run game,” he added.

Ben Sutherland is brought down after making a second half catch against Riverside.

The Bulldogs return to Tecumseh Vista Academy Friday at 5 p.m. to battle the host Vortex in a battle of 6-0 teams. It is the final game of the season for both and the winner will be division champions.

“The guys are very fired up,” said Rudak. “Vista ran it up on us last year. The guys on that team remember that. They are going to use it as incentive for this year’s game.”

Rudak said they are going to try and do what they do best, which is run behind the line and wear the other team down.

Bulldogs now 5-0 after defeating visiting Blenheim



By Ron Giofu


The General Amherst Bulldogs have won their first five games of the WECSSAA Tier 3 football season with the latest win coming last Thursday.

The Bulldogs knocked off the visiting Blenheim Bobcats at Centennial Park 27-13 with the Bulldogs scoring the first 27 points on the afternoon. The scoring began in the first quarter on 13-yard touchdown run by quarterback Emmitt Rosati on the game’s opening drive.

The Bulldogs would add 17 more points in the second quarter to take a 24-0 halftime lead. After kicker Matteo Gugliotta connected on a 24-yard field goal, running back Levi Reaume scored on a 20-yard touchdown run to make it 17-0.

Brayden LeClerc got in on the act later in the quarter on a seven-yard touchdown run.

Gugliotta, who also converted the three General Amherst touchdowns, kicked a 26-yard field goal in the third quarter. Blenheim had seven and 62 yard touchdown passes in the fourth quarter but could not close the gap any further.

“We played really well in the first half,” said Rosati. “We had penalties that cost us big plays. Overall we played pretty well.”

Brayden LeClerc makes a catch during first half action against Blenheim last Thursday. General Amherst beat Blenheim 27-13 at Centennial Park.

Rosati said they get a lot of penalties in games and that is something they have to improve upon. He said the 5-0 start was nice, particularly after both junior and senior teams went winless in 2017.

“It feels great, especially after last season,” he said.

The Bulldogs play two tough opponents in the final two games, both on the road, and Rosati said they will have to play hard to win them.

General Amherst head coach John Rudak said they controlled the ball well and “we didn’t have to pass too much.”

“They played us straight up. They didn’t try to cheat on us,” Rudak said of the Bobcats, adding the visitors were “undermanned” and used some trick plays to get scores.

“The best part was all of our future guys were all able to get in the game and have a chance to play,” he said, as the Bulldogs are a combined team this year with a lot of junior aged players on it.

Reaume and LeClerc both ran the ball well, he noted and Bryce Dougan played well on defense.

“Penalties are costing us,” he added. “We had two touchdowns called back.”

Both of the final two regular season games are at Tecumseh Vista Academy, with the opponents this week being Riverside at 7 p.m. Thursday. The Bulldogs close the season with a game next Friday against Tecumseh Vista Academy at 5 p.m.

For more photos from the Oct. 18 football game, view our photo album.

Bulldogs eke out road win at Brennan



By Ron Giofu


The General Amherst Bulldogs improved to 4-0 on the season last Thursday afternoon by the smallest margin of victory possible.

The Bulldogs held on and defeated the Brennan Cardinals 22-21 in a game played at Brennan. The Cardinals trailed 22-12 early in the fourth quarter but a field goal and a touchdown put them within one point. General Amherst’s Calvin Cribley chose a fine time for his second interception of the game, as that came on the two-point attempt late in the game on the Cardinals’ last touchdown and allowed the Bulldogs to hang on for the win.

Emmitt Rosati (7, black jersey) throws a pass during the Oct. 11 win at Brennan.

Both teams scored on their opening drives with Bulldogs’ quarterback Emmitt Rosati going up the middle for a three-yard touchdown run but Brennan tied it on the next series with a 23-yard touchdown pass.

The only other first half scoring was a single by Brennan off of a punt to make in 8-7 at the half. The Cardinals added another rouge off of a missed 40-yard field goal early in the third quarter to go up 9-7 but the Bulldogs answered back as running back Levi Reaume scored on a seven-yard run and then found the end zone on the two-point attempt to put General Amherst up 15-9.

Brennan would get a 23-yard field goal before the third quarter was out to make it a 15-12 game but Rosati had a four-yard run in the fourth quarter to make it 22-12. Matteo Gugliotta made all converts he attempted for the Bulldogs.

Levi Reaume finds room to run during the second half of General Amherst’s 22-21 win at Brennan Oct. 11.

The Cardinals got the next nine points but could get no closer.

“It felt good. We played pretty hard,” said Reaume after the game. “Our offense played pretty well. We executed and ran the ball well.”

Reaume called the one-point victory “a great confidence booster” as the team knows it can win a tight game.

“We’re confident in our ability for the rest of the season,” said Reaume.

General Amherst head coach John Rudak said four Bulldog turnovers made the game tighter than it should have been, but credited his players for doing a good job and picking up the win.

“We did everything we could do and did a good job,” he said.

Rudak said both the offensive and defensive lines played well and agreed that the Bulldogs get a “huge amount of confidence” going into the rest of the season.

Brennan’s Dante Daniels fights off four Bulldog defenders during Amherst’s 22-21 victory.

“Hopefully that carries over into the Blenheim game,” said Rudak.

The win over Brennan was “definitely one of the most exciting games from a fan and coaching perspective.”

The game against the Brennan Bobcats will be Thursday at 3 p.m. at Centennial Park. It will be the final regular season home game of the year for the Bulldogs, who then close the regular season with two games on the road.

For more photos from the Brennan game, visit our Facebook album.

Bulldogs win season opener against Cardinal Carter


By Ron Giofu


The General Amherst Bulldogs are already doing better this season than they did last year.

The Bulldogs finished 0-6 at both the senior and junior levels in 2017 but took a combined team to the Libro Centre last Thursday night and won 24-14 over the Cardinal Carter Cougars.

The teams played a scoreless first quarter but General Amherst scored three of the four touchdowns in the second quarter. Quarterback Emmitt Rosati connected with wide receiver Calvin Cribley on a 23-yard touchdown pass off of a fake field goal to open the scoring. After a 56-yard touchdown run by Cardinal Carter tied it, Rosati scored from two-yards out to put General Amherst up 14-7.

Rosati and Cribley hooked up again right before the second quarter ended, this time on a 20-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-7 Bulldogs at the half.

General Amherst quarterback Emmitt Rosati dashes through a hole during second half action in his team’s 24-14 win over the Cardinal Carter Cougars Sept. 20.

Bulldogs’ kicker Matteo Gugliotta, who successfully converted all three touchdowns, booted a 26-yard field goal in the third quarter to put General Amherst up 24-7 but the Cougars scored on a 72-yard pass play later in the third to make it a 24-14 game.

Neither team scored in the fourth quarter.

Cribley admitted to being “a little bit nervous” but believes he played well. He believed there were too many mistakes and that he has to cut down on them. As for his touchdowns, Cribley said he ran his routes and that Rosati got him the football.

General Amherst head coach John Rudak pointed out how big it was to get the win.

“That was a very important win for the program,” he said. “Last year, our team barely survived the season.”

The Bulldogs had about “nine or ten” Grade 9 players quit the team because they were worried about going against much larger players, said Rudak, but he hoped they would return next year to help the future of the football program at Amherst. General Amherst would like to eventually return to having junior and senior teams, Rudak added, but pointed out six of the eight teams in the WECSSAA Tier 3 division are combined teams.

General Amherst’s Eric Blanchette (11) avoids a Cardinal Carter tackler on his way up the field last Thursday night.

There were some “first game jitters” against Cardinal Carter, Rudak said. There were instances where there were either too many players on the field or not enough and Rudak said they also have to be more aggressive. He said their leaders stepped up and played well.

For more photos from the Sept. 20 senior football game, click here.

The Bulldogs next game is this Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. versus Lajeunesse. That game will be at Centennial Park.

Jr. Bulldogs show heart in season-ending loss



By Ron Giofu


The General Amherst Bulldogs junior football team may not have won a game this season, but the coaches still saw progress this season.

The Bulldogs lost to the Sandwich Sabres 34-10 last Tuesday afternoon at Centennial Park to finish the 2017 WECSSAA junior football season 0-6. The Sabres did all of their scoring in the first half and led 34-3. General Amherst took some pride in winning the second half, as they outscored Sandwich 7-0.

Austin Farmer (22, left) outruns a pair of Sandwich defenders during a run in the second half Oct. 31 at Centennial Park.

The Sabres started quick with a 60-yard touchdown run on the first play from scrimmage. After recovering the ensuing onside kick, Sandwich scored again on a 32-yard touchdown pass to go up 14-0.

The Sabres scored three touchdowns in the second quarter thanks to a 39-yard run, a 13-yard run and a 22-yard pass with a fourth touchdown called back on a penalty. The Sabres also had another major called back due to a penalty in the third quarter.

Will Jones booted a 30-yard field goal for the Bulldogs in the second quarter with Anthony McCarthy scoring from a yard out in the fourth quarter. The latter touchdown was set up thanks to strong running from Austin Farmer on that drive.

Preston Muzzin (84) makes a catch in the first half of General Amherst’s Oct. 31 game versus Sandwich. The Sabres won 34-10.

Quarterback Emmitt Rosati missed the game due to his lingering ankle injury.

“We started a lot of Grade 9’s to give them experience,” said General Amherst head coach Dino Rosati. “They did well.”

The Bulldogs knew they were out of the playoffs, Rosati added, as they had to win the previous week’s game versus Catholic Central to have a shot. Despite being eliminated from playoff contention, Rosati said Amherst still played hard.

“They played right until the end,” he said.

Members of the senior team helped with the coaching, he added, with Emmitt also helping to coach as he called the plays on offense.

General Amherst quarterback Nolan Crain (82) throws a pass during General Amherst’s loss to the Sandwich Sabres Oct. 31 at Centennial Park.

Rosati said about 12-14 players are eligible to return next season. The junior Bulldogs featured a lot of Grade 9 players that were new to football this season.

“I think we learned a lot,” said Rosati. “We had a good number of inexperienced Grade 9’s.”

With a year of football under their belts, Rosati said the Bulldogs have a “good chance to be successful” next season.