Triumph in Toronto

The Quinte Skyhawks recorded their franchise-first victory just three games into their inaugural season — and it came on the road.

 Skyhawks 14, Jr. Argos 10

The newest entry in the East Division of the junior category of the Ontario Football Conference defeated the Toronto Junior Argonauts 14-10 Sunday at St. Michael’s College.

The expansion Hawks opened their rookie season with consecutive losses to the powerhouse Oshawa Hawkeyes and Scarborough Thunder, getting outscored by a combined margin of 72-24. On Sunday, though, all of that was history as the Hawks made history by chalking up the first win in the team’s first season.

“What a game!” said an elated Skyhawks head coach, Peter Gabriel after the triumph in Toronto. “So proud of these young men. They gave it their all. It’s so nice to get that W for Quinte.”

Skyhawks carried a slim 7-3 lead into the second half but the hometown Junior Argonauts used a deep strike to grab a 10-7 advantage in the third quarter. Skyhawks then initiated a drive from their own 35-yard line, culminating in a Carter Stephens pass to Jose Dava covering 40 yards for the go-ahead touchdown. Tom Cavan converted. Quinte 14, Toronto 10.

Quinte’s defence turned in a stellar fourth-quarter performance to preserve the lead, and at the final gun the celebration was on.

“Our offence moved the ball and the defence came up big when needed,” said Gabriel. “As I said last week, we’re moving in the right direction. This is definitely a confidence boost against another very good Toronto team.”

A 50-yard passing play from Stephens to Austin Grills — converted by Cava — gave Quinte its opening major in the second quarter Sunday after a Toronto field goal had provided the locals with a 3-0 lead. An earlier Skyhawks TD by Jakob Akey off an INT was wiped out on a flag.

The 1-2 Skyhawks now prepare to host the Peterborough Wolverines (2-1) Sunday at MAS 2. After opening the season with a loss, the Wolverines have won two in a row — 56-7 over the Huronia (Barrie/Orillia) Stallions and 14-7 against the York Lions.

ON DECK: Sunday — Quinte Skyhawks vs. Peterborough Wolverines, 6 p.m. at MAS 2.