On what was supposed to be a day entirely dedicated to McMaster school spirit, the Windsor Lancers walked into Ron Joyce Stadium and stood up to the defending champions, providing the Marauders with their most difficult test of the season.
Usually notable for an electric offense, the 3-3 Lancers were carried by the defense, holding Mac to only 17 points at half.
There was a solid contribution made by all positions, however it was the secondary in particular that made an impact. Mac quarterback Kyle Quinlan entered Saturday’s homecoming game having thrown zero interceptions so far this year.
Windsor’s DB #8 Josh Burns picked off Quinlan twice and helped keep the deficit to singled digits until Mac made the score 27-11 after a Tyler Loveday score, with less than two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Windsor though, fired right back with touchdown of their own, thanks to an Austin Kennedy connection with receiver Evan Psczczonak to make the score 27-18.
Unfortunately, on a day when the 13th man could have been the most useful, the Mac faithful began to trickle out of the bleachers due to the cold and wet weather.
Though the game was close, Kyle Quinlan managed to throw for over 400 yards through three quarters; Kennedy by comparison had 298 yards.
With home field advantage in the playoffs tied to a victory for the Maroon and Grey, the fourth frame was undoubtedly the 2012 season’s most important.
Also at stake for Mac was a 19 game win steak dating back to September of last year when the team lost its second game to the visiting Mustangs.
With so much on the line, McMaster pulled away from the Lancers after a crucial fumble recovery in the Windsor end zone to make the score 37-18.
In the end McMaster continued their CIS record-breaking win streak, locked up ideal playoff standing and most importantly, defended their home turf.
A late pick by linebacker Nick Shortill all but sealed the deal for the seventh Marauder victory of the season with a final score of 39-18.