The Cold Lake Royals take Vermilion 35-14 in Home Opener
Photo Credits: Chastity Roberts & Michelle Jarrett-Francis Royals Facebook Page
Vermilion was in town as the Royals took to Soholt Field for the first time this season with a win over the Marauders. After suffering a devastating 37-0 loss to Holy Rosary to open the season last weekend, Head Coach Kelly Johnson said the club really needed to pull out the win on Friday.
“It was great for our program, a good way to get things going here at home. We had a great crowd, it was rocking here at home,” exclaims Coach Johnson. “We got our passing game going, which was really nice. Daniel Delorme, receiver, and Anthony Francis, receiver, had phenomenal games. It was really nice to see that happen.” Johnson says the squad was fully dimensional on the field, “our defensive backs played really well, we had a couple of nice interceptions which were very timely for us.”
Overall, our team moral was up a lot. It was really nice to get that win. – Kelly Johnson Head Coach Cold Lake Royals
The club will travel to Edmonton for an exhibition game against the St. Paul Lions. The longtime rivals have had a year off playing each other, Coach Johnson says his squad is hungry with anticipation for the meeting at Clarke Stadium. “Technically, this is going to be an exhibition for us. We’re in two different divisions, we have a crossover weekend. As coaches, St. Paul and us, we thought it would be fun to do something different for the kids. We get to go play on field turf, which is something the boys haven’t really done before. It’s something different and something to look forward to.”
After the Royal Vs Lions game, there is a junior football game scheduled on the field between the Edmonton Wildcats and Edmonton Huskies. Coach Johnson said the team is going to stick around to cheer on some former Royals’ players. “We both have players on those teams. We thought this is a great opportunity.” Coach Johnson says it’s “amazing” to see some of his former players go on to play junior football. “We’ll have five (alumni) players dressed in that game. It’s really cool, lately, we have had a lot of kids turned on by football, and us coaches, we really value that. Some of these kids come back and help us coach at spring ball and it’s really good.”
It doesn’t matter if we win or lose, if we get kids that love something and have a passion for it. It’s very cool for us to see that. – Kelly Johnson Head Coach Cold Lake Royals
“We haven’t played them in a couple year, but traditionally St. Paul and us have been arch rivals. It’s going to be fun!” The game may be exhibition on the score card, but it’s for keeps between the clubs, who have a long standing rivarly. “St. Paul is traditionally a very physical team. We’re going to make sure we’re a little ampted up on our defense. We want to come out and be physical.” The game will also allow Coach Johnson to play some of the underutilized players, “we’ll be able to evaluate all our kids and hopeful see some rising stars.”
Next regular season game for the Royals will be the 23rd against the Westlock Thunderbirds.