The Golden Bears execute a smooth hand-off during Thursday's six-aside football game, which the Hague Panthers won comprehensively, 66-14. Herald photo by Gary Pearson
--PRINCE ALBERT-- The PACI Golden Bears, although comprehensively beaten Thursday, maintained upbeat demeanours under tough circumstances on the sidelines throughout the contest, continuously reinforcing one another with positive and constructive feedback.
‚ÄúWe are real proud of them,‚ÄĚ said Golden Bears assistant coach Troy Semenchuk after his team‚Äôs 66-14 loss at the hands of the Hague Panthers. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs not something we coach the heck of them at. They are just good kids that way, they know there is no point in not being classy.‚ÄĚ
Quarterback Wendall Halkett-Lafond further reinforces the Golden Bears‚Äô sunny disposition, always placing the team‚Äôs well-being ahead of his own. The selfless 16-year-old often requests the coaching staff to award each individual equal playing time.
‚ÄúThe team‚Äôs great right now,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúWe are always doing team-building stuff. It‚Äôs really good to communicate out on the field to get our chemistry up because it‚Äôs hard right now.‚ÄĚ
The Panthers showcased their predatory instincts and pounced on the Golden Bears for 24 unanswered points within four minutes of the kickoff. The home side settled down but found themselves in a hole too deep from which to emerge.
Panthers‚Äô pivot Luke Guenter took the game by the scruff of its neck. Throwing for one touchdown pass and adding three on the ground, the 15-year-old sensation had a game to remember.
‚ÄúWe just really wanted to get our running game going more, so that was our game plan,‚ÄĚ said Guenter. ‚ÄúWe have been practising hard and working on every play to get the basics down.‚ÄĚ
The Golden Bears fell to 1-3 on the season, but have a winnable upcoming fixture versus Birch Hills at home on Monday. It is a rematch of the Golden Bears‚Äô first game of the season, which the Prince Albert/St. Louis outfit won 45-32.
The Golden Bears are still in the mix for a playoff berth and a top-four finish. A win on Monday will inject additional spirit and verve into a team that already has both of the aforementioned traits in ample supply.