The McMaster Marauders finished off a perfect regular season in style.
Kyle Quinlan threw for 217 yards and a touchdown and rushed for two more scores in just under a half of play as the defending Vanier Cup champions capped an 8-0 season with a 43-0 victory over the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks in Canadian university football play.
The win marks McMaster’s first undefeated regular season since 2003, when the team rolled to an unblemished regular-season record and a Yates Cup victory.
The Marauders have won 18 straight games dating back to Week 3 of 2011, one shy of the CIS record set by Laval from 2004 to 2005. McMaster will get a chance to tie the record when the school hosts one of the OUA semifinal in two weeks.
With No. 2 Calgary’s loss to No. 8 Regina on Friday night, McMaster finished the regular season as the only undefeated team in the CIS.
Quinlan, who finished the day 16-for-19, broke an all-time McMaster record by registering his 60th career passing touchdown to surpass the previous mark held by Ben Chapdelaine (1997-2001).
“It’s something we can celebrate for a little bit, but this is a veteran group and we know better than to be too happy with that,” said Quinlan of the team’s regular-season mark. “We are looking forward to the playoffs — being 8-0 and lose out in the first round doesn’t mean anything.
“We have to go out and win them all now.”
Elsewhere in the CIS it was: No. 4 Montreal 44, McGill 0; No. 5 Guelph 39, York 18; No. 6 Queen’s 35, Toronto 7; No. 7 Western 32, Ottawa 29; No. 9 Acadia 12, Saint Mary’s 5; No. 10 Manitoba 37, UBC 31; Waterloo 48, Windsor 29; Mount Allison 29, St. FX 16; Sherbrooke 48, Concordia 21; and Saskatchewan 27, Alberta 10.
At Hamilton, the Marauders’ defence shut down the Golden Hawks’ offensive attack, allowing just 121 yards to post McMaster’s first shutout since Sept. 26, 2008.
Joey Cupido was the top defensive player, recording seven tackles to go along with the game’s lone interception.
“[The defence] worked their butts off putting a zero on the board and that means something,” said Marauders’ head coach Stefan Ptaszek. “They’ve given up the fewest points in the OUA and I think that means something to them as well — they deserve to be recognized as if not the best group in Ontario then one of the best.”
Quinlan’s school record-breaking touchdown pass came with 5:10 remaining of the second quarter when he connected with Josh Vandeweerd to make the score 24-0.
Quinlan also punched in two TDs on the ground, scoring on a 20-yard rush at 5:15 of the first quarter and adding another score with his legs from 12 yards out at 3:46 of the second.
Tyler Crapigna opened the scoring with a 43-yard field goal at 8:41 of the first quarter.
McMaster backup quarterback Marshall Ferguson added a five-yard pass to Dahlin Brooks to make the score 33-0 with five seconds remaining in the second quarter.
He also added a rushing touchdown midway through the fourth quarter to close the scoring at 43-0.
McMaster has a bye during next week’s OUA quarter-final games.
Despite the loss, Laurier (3-5) still qualified for the playoffs and will visit Queen’s next weekend.
No. 4 Carabins 44, Redmen 0
At Montreal, Alexandre Nadeau-Piuze threw for 305 yards and three touchdowns as the Carabins (7-1) rolled past McGill (2-6).
No. 5 Griffins 39, Lions 18
At Toronto, Robert Farquharson rushed for 125 yards and a TD as Guelph defeated York.
With the win, Guelph (7-1) secured a first-round bye in the OUA playoffs.
The Lions (2-6) were eliminated from post-season contention with the loss.
No. 6 Gaels 35, Varsity Blues 7
At Kingston, Ont., Bill McPhee threw for 162 yards and two TDs as the Gaels downed Toronto.
Queen’s (6-2) will host Laurier in the OUA quarter-finals next weekend.
The Varisty Blues (2-6) were eliminated from playoff contention.
No. 7 Mustangs 32, Gee-Gees 29
At Ottawa, Lirim Hajrullahu booted his fifth field goal of the day with four seconds left on the clock as Western escaped with a win over the Gee-Gees.
The Mustangs (5-3) host Windsor in the OUA playoffs next weekend.
Ottawa (2-6) started the season 0-5 and won two straight after firing head coach Gary Etcheverry but failed to make the playoffs for the first time since 1991.
No. 9 Axemen 12, Huskies 5
At Wolfville, N.S., James Fioroni caught the game’s only touchdown as Acadia (6-1) defeated Saint Mary’s (2-5).
No. 10 Bisons 37, Thunderbirds 31
At Winnipeg, Anthony Coombs rushed for 169 yards and a TD as the Bisions (4-3) downed UBC (2-5).
Warriors 48, Lancers 29
At Waterloo, Ont., Ben Hall threw for 196 yards and two touchdowns as the Warriors (2-6) upset Windsor (3-5).
Despite the loss, the Lancers made the OUA playoffs and will take on Western next weekend.
Mounties 29, X-Men 16
At Antigonish, N.S., Mount Allison (3-4) scored 21 points in the first quarter before hanging on to beat St. FX (2-5).
Vert et Or 48, Stingers 21
At Sherbrooke, Que., the Vert et Or (5-3) led 35-14 at halftime in cruising to an easy win over Concordia (1-7).
Huskies 27, Golden Bears 10
At Edmonton, Chase Bradshaw tossed for 225 yards and three TDs as the Huskies (4-3) defeated Alberta (0-7).