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October 20, 2009

UFRC - CIS Football Top 10 (#9): Laval returns to No. 1

OTTAWA (CIS) - The reigning Vanier Cup champion Laval Rouge et Or are back to a familiar place as they return to the top of the UFRC - CIS football rankings after spending two weeks at No. 2.

Laval had led 25 straight national polls - and 44 of 45 polls dating back to the start of the 2005 season - before surrendering the No. 1 spot to archrival Montreal following a 28-7 loss to the Carabins on Oct. 4.

The defending champions reclaim their throne thanks to a 73-7 interlock domination of Mount Allison (0-6) combined to a 34-15 upset win by Sherbrooke (3-3) over Montreal, which falls to No. 4 in the new rankings.

The Rouge et Or received 45 of the available 55 first-place votes and 1,712 points in the ninth Top 10 of the campaign. Laval, which extended its CIS-record streak to 34 straight home wins overall with the victory over Mount A, could clinch first place in the Quebec conference with a win at Sherbrooke on Saturday.

Rounding out the new UFRC poll are the No. 2-Queen's Gaels (7-0), No. 3-Calgary Dinos (5-1), No. 5-Saskatchewan Huskies (5-1), No. 6-Western Ontario Mustangs (5-2), No. 7-Saint Mary's Huskies (5-1), No. 8-Ottawa Gee-Gees (5-2), No. 9-St. Francis Xavier X-Men (5-1), and No. 10 McMaster Marauders (5-2).

Queen's, which received eight first-place nods, moves up two spots to a season-high No. 2 following a dramatic 27-26 win over Western that clinched first place in the OUA for the Gaels. The Kingston squad, which extended its school-record streak to 17 consecutive regular-season victories, wraps up conference play Saturday at Laurier (5-2).

Calgary, which earned the remaining two first-place votes, holds on to No. 3 for the fourth straight week and for the sixth time this fall. The Dinos, who enjoyed a bye last weekend and are currently tied with Saskatchewan for first place in the Canada West, resume conference play on Saturday (Shaw TV, 1 p.m. Mountain Time) when they host Regina (3-3).

No. 4-Montreal hopes to rebound Saturday at Bishop's (2-4). The Gaiters are coming off a huge 33-12 upset win at StFX.

No. 5-Saskatchewan moves up two positions to its best ranking in four weeks following a 31-11 win at Manitoba. The Huskies, who finally seem on track after a slow start having outscored their opponents 75-18 in their last two outings, host Alberta (3-3) Friday night.

No. 6-Western, loser of two of its last three games, is in a four-way tie for second place in the OUA standings heading into its regular-season finale against Toronto (1-6) on Saturday (Rogers TV London, 1 p.m.). With 13 possible scenarios, the Mustangs can finish as high as second and as low as fifth.

No. 7-Saint Mary's is tied atop the AUS standings for the first time this fall after a 39-23 interlock win over McGill combined to StFX's loss to Bishop's.

First place in the Atlantic conference will be on the line Friday night when the Huskies host the X-Men. Saint Mary's wraps up conference play against 1-5 Acadia on Oct. 30, while StFX ends the schedule against 0-6 Mount Allison.

Ottawa, at a season-high No. 8 and part of the four-way tie for second place in Ontario, hopes to conclude conference play with a fifth straight victory Saturday against Windsor (2-5). The Gee-Gees are coming off a 54-31 win over York.

No. 9-StFX hopes to rebound from its first loss of the campaign Friday at Saint Mary's. The X-Men took the first end of the two-game season series 24-19 back on opening night, on Sept. 12.

No. 10 McMaster is also in the hunt for second place in the OUA after surviving a 15-14 overtime affair at Windsor last Saturday. The Marauders host Guelph (3-4) Saturday (The Score, 1 p.m.).

UFRC - CIS FOOTBALL TOP 10 (#9)

Pts (1st place) - Last week

1. Laval (5-1) - 1712 (45) - 2
2. Queen's (7-0) - 1523 (8) - 4
3. Calgary (5-1) - 1517 (2) - 3
4. Montreal (4-2) - 1071 - 1
5. Saskatchewan (5-1) - 1062 - 7
6. Western Ontario (5-2) - 899 - 5
7. Saint Mary's (5-1) - 671 - 8
8. Ottawa (5-2) - 470 - 9
9. StFX (5-1) - 260 - 6
10. McMaster (5-2) - 157 - 10

Other teams receiving votes: Wilfrid Laurier (103), Sherbrooke (43), Alberta (15), Guelph (2), Simon Fraser (1).

CIS FOOTBALL WEEK 9 SCHEDULE (all times LOCAL)

Friday, Oct. 23
19:00 No. 9-StFX (5-1) at No. 7-Saint Mary's (5-1)
19:00 Alberta (3-3) at No. 5-Saskatchewan (5-1)
19:00 Manitoba (2-4) at UBC (1-6)

Saturday, Oct. 24
13:00 No. 4-Montreal (4-2) at Bishop's (2-4)
13:00 McGill (3-3) at Concordia (2-4), Radio-Canada
13:00 York (0-7) at Waterloo (2-5)
13:00 No. 2-Queen's (7-0) at Laurier (5-2)
13:00 Windsor (2-5) at Ottawa (5-2), Rogers TV (Ottawa) / SSN Canada (webcast)
13:00 Guelph (3-4) at McMaster (5-2), The Score
13:00 Toronto (1-6) at No. 6-Western (5-2), Rogers TV (London)
13:00 Regina (3-3) at No. 3-Calgary (5-1), Shaw TV
14:00 Acadia (1-5) at Mount Allison (0-6), EastLink
16:00 No. 1-Laval (5-1) at Sherbrooke (3-3)

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The University Football Reporters of Canada represents journalists and broadcasters in every region of the country covering CIS Football. The UFRC's primary objective is to work with CIS, its institutions and football programs to build resources and exposure for Canadian University Football from coast to coast through the contribution of the media.


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