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Saskatoon Hilltops fall short of expectations in PFC semifinal win

Click to play video: 'Saskatoon Hilltops fall short of expectations in PFC semifinal win' Saskatoon Hilltops fall short of expectations in PFC semifinal win
WATCH ABOVE: The Saskatoon Hilltops fell short of head coach Tom Sargeant’s expectations in their PFC semifinal win over the Winnipeg Rifles. Ryan Flaherty with the story – Oct 17, 2017

The Saskatoon Hilltops are off to the Prairie Football Conference (PFC) championship game for an eleventh-straight year, but only after surviving a scare in the semifinal against the Winnipeg Rifles.

The Hilltops held off a late comeback to win the game 28-21.

READ MORE: Saskatoon Hilltops down Winnipeg Rifles 28-21 in PFC semifinal

Leading up to the game, Hilltops head coach Tom Sargeant guaranteed his team would play its best game of the season.

They failed to live up to the promise.

“This is game nine, so you would think we’d come out and play our best game of the year and we didn’t do that, so obviously our practice week was not proper, the tempo wasn’t what it needed to be,” Sargeant said.

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“As a coach I’m going have to make some adjustments.”

Hilltops linebacker Riley Pickett concurred with Sargeant’s assessment.

“You know we didn’t play as well as we could have,” Pickett stated.

“We let 21 points on the board and that’s just unacceptable from our defence.”

WATCH BELOW: Josh Ewanchyna goes 91 yards on the opening kickoff for a Saskatoon Hilltops touchdown

Click to play video: 'Saskatoon Hilltops Josh Ewanchyna returns opening kick off for touchdown' Saskatoon Hilltops Josh Ewanchyna returns opening kick off for touchdown
Saskatoon Hilltops Josh Ewanchyna returns opening kick off for touchdown – Oct 17, 2017

Next up for the Hilltops is the Regina Thunder, the only team that has defeated them this season.

That starts with an intense week of practice leading up to the championship game.

“We’re going to have to come out and every day we’re going to build on the day before and just focus on Regina, get a lot of film study in and just be physical” Pickett said.

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The Hilltops and Thunder meet Sunday at SMF Field in Saskatoon. Game time is 3 p.m.

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