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Clink: Canada West Football Week 1: First and Second Team of The Week

On the defensive side, Collin Kornelson (Manitoba) and Kyle Samson (UBC) were among the most impactful players. UBC’s QB Garrett Rooker and RB Isaiah Knight were among the top performers.  A look back at the performances of the players selected to the First and Second Team of The Week. The 2023 Canada West Football season is underway with its first week taking place during the 2nd week of the U Sports football season.

TeamPosFirst TeamTeamPosSecond Team
1st TeamQBGarrett Rooker (UBC)2nd TeamQBEli Hetlinger (AB)
1st TeamRBIsaiah Knight (UBC)2nd TeamRBMatthew Peterson (AB)
1st TeamWRDaniel Perry (SSK)2nd TeamWRSam Davenport (UBC)
1st TeamWRCarter Kettyle (ALB)2nd TeamWRBrendt Adams (MB)
1st TeamWRD’Sean Mimbs (REG)2nd TeamWRWilliams-Hernandez (UBC)
1st TeamWRJonathan Rosery (AB)2nd TeamWRDANIEL WIEBE (SSK)
1st TeamWRAK Gassama (MB)2nd TeamWRMatt Sibley (CGY)
1st TeamLTCarter Stuart (AB)2nd TeamLTTroy Kowal (CGY)
1st TeamLGNolan O’Donovan (AB)2nd TeamLGDaniel Townsend (CGY)
1st TeamCDaniel Shin (AB)2nd TeamCBrayden Szeman (CGY)
1st TeamRGMatthew Ljuden (AB)2nd TeamRGDaniel Stefanyk (CGY)
1st TeamRTCody Neumann (AB)2nd TeamRTJohn Bosse (CGY)
1st TeamDETristan Francis (MB)2nd TeamDEJack Shaffer (MB)
1st TeamDTCollin Kornelson (MB)2nd TeamDTReece McCormick (SSK)
1st TeamDTKwadwo Boahen (AB)2nd TeamDTToryn Swystun-Bernes (REG)
1st TeamDEKyle Samson (UBC)2nd TeamDEGeorge Idoko (SSK)
1st TeamLBLane Novak (SSK)2nd TeamLBNick Weibe (SSK)
1st TeamLBLiam Reid (CGY)2nd TeamLBReiss Flunder (AB)
1st TeamLBMike Bangura (UBC)2nd TeamLBCameron Mah (REG)
1st TeamCBJerrell Cummings (UBC)2nd TeamCBDolani Robinson (REG)
1st TeamHBNick Conway (MB)2nd TeamHBJohn Stoll (SSK)
1st TeamSJonathan Giustini (AB)2nd TeamSSteen Rasmussen (CGY)
1st TeamHBCharlie De Land (AB)2nd TeamHBBen Sangmuah (UBC)
1st TeamCBRomeo Nash (AB)2nd TeamCBJake Nitychoruk (MB)
1st TeamKKieran Flannery-Fleck (UBC)2nd TeamKJonathan Giustini (AB)
1st TeamPChris MacLean (CGY)2nd TeamPAldo Galvan (REG)
1st TeamSTDeakon Taylor-Young (CGY)2nd TeamSTKayden Miller (SSK)

Other Articles:
U Sports Canada West Football: 2023 Team Previews
BC Lions Week 13 Takeaways
Canadians in the NFL Preseason Performances, Final Cuts
CFL Week 12 First and 2nd Team of the Week
CFL Midseason All-Star Team, Awards
@JonathanClink on Twitter

1st Team DE – Tristan Francis (MB)

Francis had 3 quality pressures including a play that resulted in an incompletion on 2nd and goal. He also had a knockdown, and 2 solo run stops, and helped with a few other run stops as well.

1st Team DT – Collin Kornelson (MB)

Kornelson was a beast generating 6 quality QB pressures. There was an interception on 3 of his pressures. He also had 3 run stops, 1 of which was on a 3rd and 1, and helped with a couple of other run stops as well. The only way his personal performance could have been better would be if he was able to pull in a deflected pass that he was able to get a hand on.

1st Team DT – Kwadwo Boahen (AB)

Boahen had a sack in the first quarter, a knockdown, and a pressure in the 2nd quarter and helped with a couple of run stops.

1st Team DE – Kyle Samson (UBC)

Samson contributed 4 QB pressures one of which he hit the QB on as well as a sack, a run stop, and helped with another run stop.

1st Team LB – Lane Novak (SSK)

Novak made 4 good run tackles and 2 quality solo run stops one of which was on a 3rd and 1. He also pressured the quarterback in the 2nd quarter, made a good tackle on a pass play, and shared another run stop for a loss in the 4th quarter.

1st Team LB – Liam Reid (CGY)

Reid had 2 solo run stops, 3 shared run stops, and three plays making a good tackle on a short pass.

1st Team LB – Maka Bangura (UBC)

Bangura pressured the quarterback 4 times, had a knockdown, a good tackle on a short pass, and had a solo and shared run stop.

1st Team CB – Jerrell Cummings (UBC)

The SFU transfer made a significant impact early in his first game with UBC. Cummings had a breakup as well as a forced fumble that he recovered in the first quarter. He broke up another pass in the 4th quarterl and did not allow any deep plays his way.

1st Team HB – Nick Conway (MB)

Conway had an interception on a deep ball in the 2nd quarter. He also broke up a pass, had a run stop, and 2 other good tackles against the run. Conway did a good job not allowing big plays his way in a game in which the opposing quarterback was taking some shots.

1st Team S – Jonathan Giustini (AB)

Giustini had a rumble recovery, a run stop, and a good tackle against the pass. He also had an interception in the third quarter.

1st Team HB – Charlie De Land (AB)

De Land had a good tackle against a short pass and shared a run stop. He had a great 4th quarter providing good coverage on a deep ball that was incomplete and had a 4th quarter interception.

1st Team CB – Romeo Nash (AB)

Nash had a great tackle against a short pass and 2 good tackles against the run. Nash was listed as a HB. Alberta only allowed 118 passing yards.

1st Team QB – Garrett Rooker (UBC)

Rooker was pressured on some of his throws and calmly rolled out of the pocket often displaying great accuracy while moving away from the pocket. He completed 19 of his 25 passes (76%) for 305 yards and a touchdown. Rooker also rushed 3 times for 19 yards.

Great throw when rolling to his right hitting Soriano for 19 yards. Underthrew an open receiver on a 2nd and long who had some separation inside the 5-yard line. Another good throw for 13 yards when rolling right throwing into a tight window to Sam Davenport. Made a good throw rolling left away from pressure to McBean for 6 yards. Made a 33-yard pass in the face of pressure in the 1st quarter but could have potentially been a longer play had it hit him in stride.

Threw slightly behind the receiver and it was broken up when rolling targetting a player in the end zone on a 2nd down resulting in an incompletion.

Showed some speed running down the right sideline for 17 yards.

1st Team RB – Isaiah Knight (UBC)

Knight rushed 20 times for 100 yards (5 average) and also had 3 receptions for 40 yards. Knight broke a tackle on his way to a 4 yard run early in the game. He ran through a hole on a fantastic run for 15 yards spinning off a couple of tackles on his way in the 2nd quarter. He turned on the jets for a 20-yard gain on a catch in the backfield. On another reception, he broke a tackle on his way to a 10-yard gain that was also all YAC.

1st Team WR – Daniel Perry (SSK)

Perry had 5 catches for 150 yards and a touchdown. Caught a short pass over the middle on a 2nd and 9 threw off the cover defender and jumped away from another tackler on his way to a 14-yard gain in the 2nd quarter. Perry caught a pass running a slant over the middle and took it for a 90-yard touchdown.

1st Team WR – Carter Kettyle (ALB)

2 catches for 141 yards and 2 touchdowns. Kettyle caught a short pass just 2 yards downfield over the middle that he took 70 yards to the house for a massive touchdown with great blocking downfield and broke a tackle toward the end of the play. In the 2nd quarter on a very similar play, he caught a ball 4 yards downfield and took it for a 71-yard play breaking 2 tackles on the way. Great blocking on both plays.

1st Team WR – D’Sean Mimbs (REG)

6 catches for 92 yards. Mimbs caught a pass 28 yards downfield getting a foot in bounds for a 28-yard pass.

1st Team WR – Jonathan Rosery (AB)

6 catches for 90 yards. Rosary got open over the middle and took it up the left sideline for a 26-yard gain and again over the right side for 15 yards. He caught a short pass early in the 4th quarter and picked up some YAC for a 20-yard gain.

1st Team WR – AK Gassama (MB)

3 catches for 72 yards and 1 touchdown as well as 2 rushes for 45 yards. Gassama had a 45-yard run on a sweep to the right breaking 2 tackles in the 1st quarter. Got open down the right side of the field for a 52-yard touchdown.

1st Team Offensive Line – Alberta Golden Bears

Alberta did not give any sacks and did a great job protecting Eli Hetlinger who had the most yards among any quarterback in week 1. The offensive line also did good run blocking as Matthew Peterson rushed for 6.6 yards per carry.

Starters: LT Carter Stuart, LG Nolan O’Donovan, C Daniel Shin, RG Matthew Ljuden, RT Cody Neumann

1st Team K – Kieran Flannery-Fleck (UBC)

Flannery-Fleck made all 6 of his field goals and made his point after try. His longest was from 38 yards and 4 of them were 30 or longer.

1st Team P – Chris MacLean (CGY)

I almost never watch a punter and think to myself “This player is balling” but I had that thought watching Chris MacLean’s performance. He had 9 punts averaging 46.4 yards per punt with the longest being 61 yards. 3 of his punts were longer than 50.

1st Team ST – Deakon Taylor-Young (CGY)

Taylor-Young had the longest punt return of the weekend on his only return which was for 20 yards. He also returned 3 kickoffs averaging 10.3 yards per return.

2nd Team DE – Jack Shaffer (MB)

Shaffer generated quality pressure on 3 different plays and helped with a couple of run stops. He also made a good run tackle and helped with another tackle against the run.

2nd Team DT – Reece McCormick (SSK)

McCormick had a sack, a run stop for a loss, shared another run stop for a loss, and later helped with another run stop.

2nd Team DT – Toryn Swystun-Bernes (REG)

Systun-Bernes shared 4 run stops as well as helped on 2 other run tackles. He also generated a pressure in the third quarter.

2nd Team DE – George Idoko (SSK)

Idoko contributed 3 quality pressures and hit the QB on 1 of them. He also had 2 run stops and a sack.

2nd Team LB – Nick Wiebe (SSK)

Wiebe had 5 quality run stops as well as a shared run stop, a sack, and another good tackle against the run.

2nd Team LB – Reiss Flunder (AB)

Flunder had 2 quality run stops as well as another 3 good tackles against the run. He also had a hit that broke up a short pass and later forced a fumble that ended a red zone drive in the 2nd quarter. Flunder displayed great lateral movement.

2nd Team LB – Cameron Mah (REG)

Mah made a lot of good plays sharing tackles at middle linebacker. He split 2 run stops and another 4 tackles against the run. He also had a solo run stop and a pressure in the first quarter. Mah made a couple of other good tackles against short passes and another against the run.

2nd Team CB – Dolani Robinson (REG)

Robinson broke up a pass in the endzone in the first quarter and hit the quarterback when blitzing in the 2nd.

2nd Team HB – John Stoll (SSK)

Stoll had a sack in the 2nd, a breakup, and a run stop in the third, and applied some pressure on the quarterback in the 4th quarter.

2nd Team S – Steen Rasmussen (CGY)

Rasmussen was listed officially as a halfback but was very frequently playing a similar role as a safety as Calgary was often using a 4-4-4 defensive formation and the 2 halfbacks would often both act as safeties with no player officially designated as safety. Rasmussen had 3 good tackles on plays against the pass as well as 1 run play. He also had a pass breakup in the 2nd quarter.

2nd Team HB – Ben Sangmuah (UBC)

Sangmuah provided good coverage on incomplete passes targeting a receiver he was covering on 3 separate plays. He also had 3 good tackles on short passing plays. His man was able to catch a pass for a successful 2-point conversion but Sangmuah had an impressive day of providing good coverage rather consistently.

2nd Team CB – Jake Nitychoruk (MB)

Nitychoruk broke up a pass in the end zone on a 3rd and goal in the first quarter. He also made a very good tackle containing a short pass in the 3rd quarter. Nitychoruk did a good job not allowing deep plays his way against a pretty dangerous offense that did found sound success on aggressive plays.

2nd Team QB – Eli Hetlinger (AB)

Hetlinger completed 21 of his 31 passes (67.7%) for 380 yards and 2 touchdowns. He also rushed 3 times for 16 yards. His 2 touchdowns were both screen passes to Carter Kettyle that were both over 70-yard plays.

Hetlinger had a good pass 13 yards to Thomas when rolling to his right in the first quarter.

Made a 36-yard play but was past the line of scrimmage

Stepped into the pocket and made a good 14-yard pass down the middle to Rosery.

Nearly intercepted on throw short when rolling right throwing into coverage. Made a good read down the middle to Chevy Thomas for 19 yards. 10-yard scramble to the left after being pressured. Threw a great pass near the sideline 10 yards downfield for a first down in the 4th quarter.

2nd Team RB – Matthew Peterson (AB)

Peterson rushed 15 times for 99 yards and a touchdown for 6.6 yards per carry. He kept chugging on a 3rd and 2 for a first down on a great 2nd effort. Had a hole he used to start a 10-yard run forcing a missed tackle on the way. The next play made a cut to the right on a run up the middle for a 15-yard touchdown.

2nd Team WR – Sam Davenport (UBC)

3 catches for 80 yards and 1 touchdown. The SFU transfer made an impact in his first game as a T-Bird. Davenport caught a short pass and burned his man taking it 61 yards for a touchdown forcing another missed tackle on the way.

2nd Team WR – Brendt Adams (MB)

4 catches for 75 yards and 1 touchdown. Adams caught a pass that bounced off a defender for a first down on a 2nd and 7 in the 2nd quarter reacting quickly to make the play. His longest play was a 40-yard catch.

2nd Team WR – Williams-Hernandez (UBC)

Hernandez had 4 catches for 65 yards with his longest being for 33 yards.


3 catches for 63 yards and 2 touchdowns.

Went up and grabbed a touchdown pass in the back left of the end zone. Had a 49-yard touchdown down the right sideline catching a well-placed throw for a 49-yard touchdown.

2nd Team WR – Matt Sibley (CGY)

6 catches for 57 yards. Sibley also had a 9-yard run. Sibley was the only Dinos receiver to have over 30 yards receiving in their season opener.

2nd Team Offensive Line – Calgary Dinos

Calgary’s offensive line did a pretty good job to the effect of not allowing too many pressures on passing plays. There were at times struggles to get the run going. In some of the other games at times defensive lines were finding a lot of success getting pressure on the quarterback. Calgary allowed 1 sack.

Starters: LT Troy Kowal, LG Daniel Townsend, C Brayden Szeman, RG Daniel Stefanyk, RT John Bosse

2nd Team K – Jonathan Giustini (AB)

Giustini made field goals from 33, 37, and 44 yards out but missed a 39-yard field goal. He went 3 for 3 in point after tries.

2nd Team P – Aldo Galvan (REG)

Galvan had the longest average punt of 49.9 yards over 7 punts with his longest being 62 yards. He had 2 punts greater than 50 yards.

2nd Team ST – Kayden Miller (SSK)

Miller had only 1 return which was on a kickoff for 32 yards. The next closest longest kickoff return of the weekend was 19 yards.

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Jonathan Clink Reporter
Jonathan Clink joined CFL News Hub in early April of 2023. His primary responsibilities are covering the BC Lions and Montreal Alouettes. He self awarded himself the CFL Rookie Journalist of the Year in 2023 following the 2023 CFL season. He also proclaims himself to be a "really cool guy". He was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and lived a large portion of his childhood in Northwest Ontario. He currently lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan and misses being being able to have 4 months of skating every winter. Clink has written over 240 articles for CFL News Hub. He was the publication's boots on the ground at the 2023 Grey Cup in Hamilton. Clink has always had an obsession for sport and has a background in other sports as well having played hockey all his life and soccer, basketball, and lacrosse in high school. As a young child he used to log his hockey statistics after every game which is either an indication that he was destined for the role or perhaps and indication that he is rather strange.
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