Stettler Wildcats dominate in 2017 opener

Wildcats drub visiting Sylvan Lake 37-7 to open season Sept. 15

By Stu Salkeld The Stettler Independent

The Stettler Wildcats showed in their home opener Sept. 15 at Wm. E. Hay they aren’t just going to be competitive this year…they intend to dominate.

Under cold, dark clouds that afternoon, a chilly autumn wind blowing and facing league rivals Sylvan Lake on the home field, the Wildcats pounced on their opponents in a 37-7 victory.

Stettler head coach Norb Baharally said if he was able to field a 22-man roster, he was confident the team would be competitive. The Wildcats dressed 22 last Friday, and the results showed. “Having those few extra bodies really helped out,” said the head coach by phone Sept. 18.

Starting the season off right by drubbing Sylvan Lake was even sweeter. Baharally noted the Lakers beat Stettler in the conference finals last year and it was nice to get some payback.

Baharally said the key to the decisive win was consistency. “We were consistent in all aspects of the game,” said the head coach.

Offensively, the Wildcats really spread it around, with Brett Mercier, Patrick Bennett, Carson Neitz, Noah McKay, Kam Bainbridge and Liam McQuay all notching their first TD’s of the season. The Wildcats added converts and field goals too. Baharally said he was satisfied with the way the players marched downfield.

Defensively, the Wildcats played a solid game, making the big stops when needed and helping out on the scoreboard by adding a safety. “They played it out exactly how we wanted it,” said Baharally. However, the head coach said time of possession is always important, and he’d like to see his offense on the field longer, and his defense resting longer.

The special teams didn’t break any big plays but neither did they allow any, noted Baharally. “It’s always good when you don’t give up a big play on special teams,” said Baharally.

The head coach noted it’s not too late to join the Wildcats for the 2017 season; any students who wish to play should email him at or call 403-740-3635.

Looking ahead, the Wildcats hit the road to face Ponoka on Thurs., Sept. 21 at 4:30 p.m. Baharally said he hasn’t seen any video of Ponoka, but word around the league is they’re a competitive team that wants to win. Baharally said he plans to capitalize on the Wildcat’s experience. “I anticipate it will be a good game either way,” said the head coach.

Just Posted

Almost 100 kgs of suspected cocaine seized at Coutts border crossing

84 bricks of suspected cocaine seized from California residents’ vehicle; largest recorded seizure.

Big Hank hits Stettler Dec. 1

Big Hank’s Tribute to the Blues Songs of Christmas

‘I Love First Peoples’ shoebox campaign comes to Stettler

Box of gifts brings joy to children, helps reconciliation

Still waiting for justice for Pete Sopow

No arrest made, no charges laid because ‘no evidence’

Science Proves All Food Laced with Chemicals

Consumer advocates could die of starvation

Big Hank hits Stettler Dec. 1

Big Hank’s Tribute to the Blues Songs of Christmas

VIDEO: ‘Last Jedi’ premiere kicks off with droids, Daisy Ridley

Latests Star Wars film premiered in style ahead of Dec. 15 theatre debut

YouTube Canada Reveals the top videos of 2017

From a sea lion that got a bit too frisky to a toddler stealing popcorn from Prince Harry - we watched it all

Canadians urged to exercise caution in Middle East ahead of protests

Protests are in reaction to Trump’s announcement that the U.S. will recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel

Bank of Canada holds interest rate at 1%

Bank of Canada holds rate but sends fresh signals that hikes are on the horizon

Silence Breakers named Time magazine’s Person of the Year

The two runners-up were Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Donald Trump

Beyonce presents Kaepernick with award

Beyonce presented Colin Kaepernick with the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award Tuesday night

Winds churn explosive California wildfires

Ferocious Santa Ana winds raking Southern California whipped explosive wildfires Tuesday, prompting evacuation orders for thousands of homes

Russia’s Olympic punishment stuns Canadian sport community

“The Canadian team will have the confidence that they’re competing on a level playing field.”

Most Read