Written by Ravens Sports Information
OTTAWA – The Carleton Ravens will need to wait another year to bring Pedro back to campus after falling 37-7 in the 53rd annual Panda Game.
The biggest spectacle in Canadian university sports featured highlights on both sides of the ball while the annual crosstown matchup also surpassed 500,000 fans in the history of the game.
The first big play of the afternoon came halfway through the first quarter as Tanner DeJong (Brockville, Ont.) connected with Tristan Ready (Ottawa, Ont.) over the middle for a 48-yard gain. Two plays later the Ravens would finish off the drive as DeJong dropped back and found Kaseem Ferdinand (Kanta, Ont.) for the 27-yard touchdown.
The Gee-Gees would respond in the final two minutes of the first quarter as Ben Maracle (Tyendinaga, Ont.) connected over the middle with Nicholas Gendron (Gatineau, Que.) for an 81-yard catch and run touchdown to tie the game at 7 to end the quarter.
After opening the second quarter with a punt the Ravens would force a fumble at the Gee-Gees 45-yard line which Ife Onyeka (Brampton, Ont.) would recover. However, strong defence from the Gee-Gees would lead to a 2-and-out which saw Vincent Plouffe (Gatineau, Que.) pin uOttawa back to their goalline. The Gee-Gees would flip the pressure on the Ravens as Maracle found Grendon for 58-yards. After Cole Hepburn (Ottawa, Ont.) would break another pass to Gendron in the endzone uOttawa would settle for a 21-yard field goal to take a 10-7 lead.
The Ravens defence would come up with a huge red zone stand at the end of the half with Sandor Mod (Welland, Ont.) blocking the Gee-Gees field goal attempt. Before the half was out Gee-Gees kicker Campbell Fair would miss another field goal attempt wide right and the half would end a 3-point game.
The Gee-Gees would quickly open the scoring in the second half with Maracle building another long drive that finished with a 14-yard pass to Willy-Pierre Dimbongi (Ottawa, Ont.) for a 14-yard touchdown and a 17-7 lead. The Ravens would drive 60-yards back down the field setting up a 32-yard Brandon Forcier (L’Ange Gardien, Que.) field goal attempt which rang off the left post leaving the Ravens behind by 10.
On their next possession, the Gee-Gees would drive 53-yards to inside the Ravens’ 35 yard-line and set up a 40-yard field goal for Fair to put Ottawa up by 13. The Gee-Gees add to the lead on their next possession with another 6-play 24-yard drive converted into a 45-yard field goal for a 23-7 lead.
Despite their best efforts in the fourth quarter, the Ravens failed to come back as the Gee-Gees added two more touchdowns as they closed the game.