SACKVILLE, N.B. - The Mount Allison Mounties will try again to get a big monkey - make that a dog - off their back.
The Mounties couldn't muster their first win against the Saint Mary's Huskies in Halifax since Oct. 25, 1997 last week, staying with the two-time defending Atlantic University Sport football champions for a half before falling 47-18.
Perhaps the friendly confines of Rocky Stone Field in Moncton will be the change of scenery Mount Allison will need in Saturday's 7 p.m., rematch, since the Mounties haven't won at home against Saint Mary's since Oct. 24, 1998.
"We've very excited to be playing in Moncton," said Mounties head coach Kelly Jeffrey. "We anticipate a good crowd on hand, and our guys are looking forward to it."
Time is ticking away on the Mounties chances of making the playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time since the AUS expanded its postseason format in 2002 to include three teams.
The St. Francis Xavier X-Men can clinch a spot with a victory over the Acadia Axemen on Friday night in Wolfville, and the Huskies will be in by beating the Mounties. If that happens, Acadia will remain two points ahead of Mount Allison in the battle for the third spot.
Next weekend is the last round of interlock games with Quebec this season, with Mount Allison facing the daunting task of visiting perennial powerhouse Laval and Acadia home to Concordia, the last-place team in the Quebec conference.
Acadia comes to Mount Allison the following week, with the Axemen holding a huge advantage in the tiebreaker thanks to a 58-15 triumph over the Mounties on Sept. 12. The regular season ends Sept. 30, with Mount Allison at St. F.X., and Acadia at Saint Mary's.
The Mounties are surrendering 612.5 yards per game on defence, including 678 to Saint Mary's last week, and Jeffrey has made it clear that can't continue.
"Our defence has to come out and do a better job," Jeffrey said. "We're fortunate enough to have another shot at executing better against a team with a good offence that executes very well, especially on trick plays, so we have to put together a 60-minute effort not just in defence, but in all three phases of our game."
Jeffrey said running back Scott Brady (knee) is likely out for the season.