Pezzetta powers Mac to big win over York

Pezzetta powers Mac to big win over York

Toronto, ON (October 15, 2016) — Chris Pezzetta ran all over the Lions in the first half, and the remainder of the McMaster Marauders offence took over in the second Saturday.

The veteran running back from Burlington, Ont. had a total of 162 yards on 14 carries and a pair of touchdowns in the opening half, as McMaster built a 34-point lead at the break before ultimately defeating the York Lions 64-2.

Averaging 11.6 yards per carry, Pezzetta's total on the ground was a career single-game high, achieved in just two quarters of play.

Moving to 6-1, McMaster remained tied for first in the OUA standings with just one game remaining. The Marauders will travel to London, Ont. to play the Western Mustangs, one of their fellow 6-1 teams, in the final game of the regular season on October 22, with the opportunity to clinch the top seed and a first-round playoff bye with a win.

Kicker Adam Preocanin of Burlington matched the McMaster single-season record with a pair of field goals to reach 24 on the year, equalling the record set by Tyler Crapigna in 2014. However, Preocanin missed a pair of attempts in the second half that would have given him sole possession of the record, and was blocked on McMaster's final drive of the afternoon, finishing 2-5.

He sits two field goals shy of the OUA and CIS single-season record set by Guelph's Daniel Ferraro in 2014.

With his 31-yard, third-quarter touchdown, receiver Danny Vandervoort of Barrie, Ont. moved into sole possession of third on the CIS career receiving touchdown list with 29, passing his former head coach Stefan Ptaszek in the process.

Their team had not run back a kick for a touchdown all season, but Mac returners Mitch Garland of Hamilton and Aaron Baker of Scarborough, Ont.  both took punt returns the distance on Saturday. Garland provided McMaster's second touchdown of the game in the first quarter, returning a deep punt 85 yards to the end zone. Baker answered with a 63-yard return for McMaster's final touchdown of the day in the fourth quarter.

Pezzetta's replacement in the second half, rookie rusher Dominic Mandalfino enjoyed his first touchdown and a breakout performance Saturday. The Burlington native had 138 yards on 16 carries, averaging 8.6 per touch. As a team, McMaster racked up a season-high 355 yards on the ground.

Marauders quarterback Asher Hastings of Regina finished Saturday 16 of 24 passing for 207 yards and two touchdowns versus one interception. Dylan Astrom entered the game in the third quarter, completing four of five passes for 71 yards.

Dan Petermann (Stoney Creek, Ont.) was McMaster's leading receiver on the day, with 63 yards from six catches. Vandervoort followed with 66 yards from four catches with a touchdown, while Josh Vandeweerd of Burlington also caught four passes for a total of 40 yards. Max Cameron of St. Catharines, Ont. had a touchdown on his only reception of the afternoon in the first quarter, hauling in a 16-yard pass for Mac's first major.

Linebacker Eric Mezzalira of Grimsby, Ont. was McMaster's leading tackler, with five solo tackles and two assists. Lineman Fabion Foote (North York, Ont.) had five and a half tackles and two sacks.

NEXT UP: McMaster travels to London on Saturday, October 22 to close out the OUA regular season against the Western Mustangs.

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