With a home playoff game in their sights, the Langley Rams came up with a disappointing effort meaning the team will have to hit the road for the BC Junior Football League post-season.
The Rams travelled to Kelowna on Sunday to face the Okanagan Sun with the winner of the game earning second place and the right to host the semifinal rematch between the same two clubs in two weeks time.
But it was the Sun who burned Langley’s normally stout defence, accumulating 472 yards of offence and six touchdowns, including five majors through the air.
“We just didn’t come to play. It is really frustrating,” said Langley head coach Khari Joseph.
“Nobody likes to lose like that. It left a bad taste in our mouth. We just want to play good football when it matters.
“That was a meaningful game and we didn’t step up to the plate.”
The Sun led throughout, taking a 16-3 lead at the half and they were up 23-3 after three quarters. By the time Langley got its offence on track, it was too late.
Both teams scored 21 points in the fourth quarter for the 44-24 final score.
“We were chasing them the whole game. We ran out of momentum in the fourth quarter,” Joseph said.
“When we had those opportunities to turn the game, we didn’t make them and they did.”
The Sun burned the Rams secondary as quarterbacks Foster Martens (264 yards, three touchdowns) and Keith Zyla (106 yards, two touchdowns) combined to throw five touchdown passes.
Okanagan receiver Rashaun Simonise — who spent training camp with the NFL’s Cincinnati Bengals and joined the Sun after being cut — had five catches for 132 yards and one score.
Joseph complimented the Okanagan offence as they were able to get the Rams into man-to-man coverage and then go overtop for the big plays.
“All year we have been able to keep big plays out of it. They were able to take advantage of some coverages we were in,” he said. “That is good on them; we will learn from that for next (time).”
For Langley, quarterback Colby Peters came off the bench to throw for 203 yards and two scores, one apiece to Jay Jay Jackson (five catches, 93 yards) and Eldridge Sellers (seven catches, 157 yards). The team’s other touchdown came on a one-yard run from Stephen Legare.
For the defence, Shaiheem Charles-Brown had two quarterback sacks, two tackles and one assist while Isaiah Stewart and Nick Westad each had a sack. Noah Usherwood led the team with five tackles.
The defence also forced one turnover with Ryan MacDonald jarring the ball loose on a kick-off which Jacob Dodd recovered.
Langley will travel to Kelowna for the semifinals on Oct. 16.