Saturday’s provincial football championship win was a legacy moment for the G.W. Graham Grizzlies.
Players on the team that beat the Terry Fox Ravens 36-33 will forever be linked to the school’s first-ever senior varsity title. A banner will go on the wall in the gymnasium for future generations to look at.
“I’m just so happy that there are going to be kids coming to this school for as long as it’s open, and they’ll think about the first group to win a AAA football banner and want to be like us,” said quarterback Lucas Feaver. “I think that’s a really cool thing to have.”
Every time Feaver looks at that banner, he’ll be reminded that he was the MVP of the big game.
Every time Vincent Branauer looks at that banner, he’ll be reminded of an underdog team that wasn’t supposed to win, but found a way. A first-year AAA squad, they lost 34-0 to this same Terry Fox team in October, and they trailed 8-0 in the first quarter of the championship game when the Ravens scored on their opening drive.
That could have rattled them. It should have rattled them. But it didn’t.
“It was the same situation in our quarter-final game against Semiahmoo where they scored against us immediately, and it doesn’t feel good to get scored on right away,” Branauer said. “We’ve faced a lot of adversity all season, but every time we just stay together and come back.”
Feaver said the offence was never concerned being in the early hole, confident they could put points on the board.
They answered right back with a drive that ended in a Feaver to Josh Caverly touchdown pass.
“We have a lot of weapons on our team and we knew that even though they scored first, we could score as many points as them,” the QB said. “We all stepped up to the plate and played a great game and I’m proud of my team for showing up in the biggest game of the year. We knew that we could beat them and we showed it.”
While Feaver threw for 300-plus yards and three touchdowns, Branauer made life miserable for the Terry Fox offence, dialing up nine tackles and three quarterback sacks. He was on the bench when the team went into ‘victory formation,’ Feaver killing the final seconds off the clock with a kneel-down.
“It was crazy, honestly,” Branauer said. “All of us rushed onto the field to celebrate. Everyone was happy for each other and it was such a big moment for all of our players and our school. Just a huge moment.”
“It was surreal,” Feaver added. “As soon as I took the knee my hands were on my head. It’s something I dreamed of and it’s something I wasn’t quite sure would ever happen, and I am really proud of our guys.”