Skip to content

Local product helps Gryphons get elusive Homecoming victory (8 photos)

Bishop Macdonell grad Graham Brodie delivers a pick six in win over Ottawa Gee-Gees

Guelph Gryphons veteran defensive back Graham Brodie felt it was about time he experienced a win in his team’s annual Homecoming Game.

“It was definitely good to get my first Homecoming win,” he said Saturday after the sixth-ranked Gryphons defeated the eighth-ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees 33-6 in OUA football play at Alumni Stadium. “We’ve always lost at Homecoming so it’s definitely a good feeling to bring one home this time.”

Brodie helped the Gryphons get the a Homecoming victory for the first time since 2015 when they defeated the McMaster Marauders as he returned an interception 65 yards for a touchdown.

“It’s definitely exciting,” Brodie said of Homecoming Games in general. “It’s the one game you’ve got marked down on your calendar.”

Saturday, Brodie actually returned two interceptions to Ottawa’s end zone, but the first one was called back due to a Gryphon penalty. That added a little motivation to turn his second interception of the game into a pick six.

“It was a little redemption for me,” he said. “I just had to get that next one back.”

That return also featured a bit of a tightrope act for Brodie in the final 15 yards. Running just inbounds on the west side of the field, Brodie had to keep his balance and stay in bounds after being hit by an Ottawa opponent.

“I had to do a little tip-toe,” he said. “It was just that the football instincts had to kick in and I had to get the touchdown. I just kind of get in the zone and I don’t really know what’s happening.”

Like all of his teammates, Brodie had to refocus after his first interception return was negated by the penalty.

“It is disappointing, but you just have to shake it off,” he said. “You just have to get back in the game and do what you can do.”

The interception was also the second for Brodie during his time with the Gryphons as he had one that he returned five yards in 2016, his first year with the team.

Brodie has upped his game this year, something he figured he had to do as a fourth-year member of the squad.

“Just being a veteran player and just trying to be a leader on the team and trying to get the boys to rally together, that’s what’s kind of driving me as a player right now,” he said.

However, the Bishop Macdonell Catholic High School graduate isn’t exactly the type to get up and make big speeches in the dressing room. His leadership comes in other ways and it comes on the field.

“Just lead by example has always kind of been my philosophy. You do what you can do and I think people notice that and kind of react to it,” he said. “I’m not really a vocal guy. I just kind of lead by example.”

While the game was the fourth of the season in which Guelph’s opponents were ranked in the top 10 at game time, that wasn’t something the Gryphons spent much time thinking about. The rankings don’t really mean that much to them.

“Not at all,” Brodie said. “The next team is the next opponent. That’s how you’ve got to think about it.”

While the Gryphons are at 4-2, they haven’t secured a playoff berth as only the undefeated Western Mustangs (6-0) have done that. However, the victory does put them in a good position to get a spot in post-season play. However, they’d like to get either a quarter-final bye by finishing first or second or get a home game in the quarter-finals by finishing third or fourth.

“It’s definitely a big difference not to be on the road and travel, but you’ve just got to control what you can control,” Brodie said. “Everything will play out so don’t worry about where you’re going. Just do your thing and things will work out.”

The Gryphons get their bye next weekend and their next game is slated for Oct. 10 when they’re to face the Queen’s Gaels (2-4) at Kingston.

If the Gryphons have another home game this season, it’ll be in the playoffs.