Volume 93, Issue 23

Thursday, October 7, 1999


Turkey, stuffing and football

NHL Western Conference are still contenders

NHL Eastern Conference making a new drive

Turkey, stuffing and football

John Paul Mocrulski/Gazette
ALL MY THOUGHTS ARE OF TURKEY, MMMÉ TURKEY. Runningback Scott Crawley (24) and the rest of the Mustangs travel to Waterloo for a Thanksgiving weekend game on Saturday.

By Chad Thompson

Gazette Staff

Thanksgiving weekend will see the renewal of the battle between the Western Mustangs and the Waterloo Warriors.

The Mustangs travel to Waterloo on Saturday and Western head coach Larry Haylor said he knows his team is in for a struggle. "[Smash mouth football] is how they play and they will emphasize that against you."

Last weekend was a very emotional time for the Mustangs with the fanfare surrounding the final Homecoming game at J.W. Little Memorial Stadium, but Haylor was not concerned with his team having an emotional let down after last week's 39-6 win.

"Saturday our team was not overly exuberant, which is a good thing," he said. "After a win like that you can either get better or worse, we want to win and get better and not be complacent."

On the other sideline, Waterloo head coach Chris Triantafilou said he was looking forward to playing Western. "It is always a big game against Western," he said.

As far as the Mustang's offensive attack, Haylor said he would like a little more balance, but added he will go with what works. "Waterloo is harder up front than Laurier," Haylor said in reference to the Warriors' defensive line. "When you play Waterloo you better be prepared."

Western and Waterloo have been rivals for a long time and in the past two years the competition has heated up. "We are both well aware of the rivalry," Haylor said. "We certainly have played physical and close games and we expect the same [this weekend]."

Triantafilou said the rivalry increased over the last five years. "A mini-rivalry has started – But we are looking at this game as another big [Ontario University Athletics] game," he said.

Western linebacker Mark Chortos said the Mustangs need to be prepared. "Waterloo is the type of team which you have to step it up for, especially playing [in Waterloo]. The last time we played we lost a close one. It is going to be physical."

Chortos added Western's defence will have to adapt to handle the Warriors' offensive set. "We have to adjust to their two tight-end set. We are going to have to put heavier guys up front," he said.

The artificial turf at University Stadium in Waterloo is a factor which will speed up the tempo of the game, Chortos said. "We will have to make an adjustment to the turf, it will be a faster game especially with their running style," he said.

Chortos added he was quite certain the defence will be ready. "I love playing against them, it is going to be the most physical game of the season," he said.

Triantafilou said the Mustangs better be prepared for a physical game. "There is no use getting into the ring if you are going to get your head knocked off."

This game marks the beginning of the second half of the season and Haylor said he was happy with his team's play recently.

"The last two games have been quite good and encouraging. We have made improvements across the team," he said. "Our offence and defence are better, our special teams are better. Each game tests that improvement. We still have a world of improvement to be made over the course of the year."

Saturday's football game against Waterloo starts at 2 p.m..

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