Braden Konschuh, Regina Rams
REGINA, Sask. - The University of Saskatchewan pulled away from the Regina Rams in the second half as the Huskies earned a 57-14 victory on Friday night at Mosaic Stadium in what was both teams' final game of the Canada West schedule.
The loss ends the season for the Rams, while the Huskies will now cheer for Manitoba as a Bisons win over UBC on Saturday would give Saskatchewan a home playoff game for the first time since 2014.
Starting their fourth different quarterback in the last four games, the Rams hung tough with the Huskies until what was the turning point of the game late in the second half. Saskatchewan took advantage of a 15-yard no-yards penalty to take over the ball just on the Huskies' side of midfield, and a 34-yard completion from Kyle Siemens to Adam Machart turned what had been a one-score game into a 27-14 advantage for the visitors at the break.
Saskatchewan scored three touchdowns in the span of four possessions over a nine-minute stretch in the second half to end any hope of a Rams comeback.
Kyle Siemens completed 21 of his 31 passes for 321 yards and threw four touchdowns for the Huskies. Five different U of S players had touchdown catches as Colton Klassen, Machart, Jesse Kuntz, Joey Trumpy, and Kyle Newton each hauled in majors. Klassen (5 catches for 121 yards) and Kuntz (7 for 106) both hit triple digits in receiving yards, while Tyler Chow had 14 rushes for 99 yards to finish just short of the century mark.
Tristian Koronkiewicz and Riley Pickett both had sacks for the U of S defence, with Koronkiewicz also registering a pair of pass breakups in the win. Pickett's sack caused a fumble which was recovered by Evan Machibroda, leading directly to one of the Huskie touchdowns late in the third.
Ryan Schienbein tied for the game high with seven receptions as the fourth-year slotback breaks Mitchell Picton's old school record of 58 and becomes the first player in University of Regina history to have 60 catches in a single season. Kyle Borsa and Atlee Simon shouldered most of the offensive load for the Rams, with Borsa rushing seven times for 88 yards and Simon running 13 times for a total of 68 yards. Both of the Rams' running backs had touchdowns, with Simon scoring the first major of the game after punching one in from three yards out shortly after Cole Benkic fired an 18-yard rope to Cord Delinte on a fake punt. Borsa's major was on a 65-yard run on a third-and-short situation late in the second quarter.
Brandon Brooks had his first U SPORTS interception for the Rams, while Ryan Warner had Regina's lone sack.
Saskatchewan will finish either second or third in the Canada West standings and will face either UBC or Manitoba in the conference semifinals next weekend.
NOTES: Besides setting the school's single-season receptions record on Friday, Schienbein also became just the sixth player in U of R history to collect 2000 receiving yards ... Schienbein also moved up to seventh on the U of R's all-time receiving yards list, passing current offensive coordinator Mark McConkey ... Simon finishes his career with 3296 rushing yards (eighth in Canada West history) and 31 touchdowns scored (tied for sixth in conference history) ... Colton Hippe got the start for the Rams at quarterback, completing nine of 21 attempts for a total of 51 yards.