Like all season, Drake Douglas was a blue-chip target for Saskatoon quarterback Trey Reider in the Canadian Bowl as the Hilltops beat the hosting Westshore Rebels 17-10 in Langford, B.C. for their Canadian Junior Football League-leading 23rd national championship.
The 21-year-old Glen Ewen product caught all six passes thrown his way. He finished with 30 receiving yards, and returned five of six Rebels punts for a total of 20 yards.
"It's a good feeling," he said of the rainy Remembrance Day championship win. "There's a lot of history there. It's really nice to be a part of a tradition as old and as respected as the Hilltops."
The second-year player said a steady offence was a focus for the Hilltops.
"We just try to focus on consistency. Our offence did an okay job all season just trying to be consistent and not make any huge mistakes or anything like that. Just do what we practise. I just try to be an open target for my quarterback and catch anything that comes my way."
Douglas' early years on the gridiron were spent playing six-man football, which demands a strong run game.
He said aspects of his game he picked up when he was younger have translated well to 12-man.
"The coaches do a good job of trying to get me the ball in space, and [I] try to make guys miss. I think that's a good skill I learned from six-man. You get a lot more one-on-one matchups, and when you make a guy miss you can make an explosive play."
Douglas has also been receiving punts his entire football career, and takes pride in any ground the special teams squad can make up so the offence has a shorter drive.
He and some of his teammates will spend the offseason training with Parker Scott of Ignite Athletics in Saskatoon.
2024 will be Douglas' last year of junior.
"I'm always open to playing more football, so I think I'll just keep keep my options open and see where it comes my way."
Douglas added that he was thankful for his coaches and parents that helped him become a national champion.
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