By Nathan Stilwell and Josh Haslam
The Glasgow Tigers secured a solid 20-6 win against the UWS Pyros at Garscube on Sunday 1st March, spelling the American Football team’s 7th consecutive win in the Northern Divisional Cup. A win against Aberystwyth next saturday will push the Tigers into the British University and College Sport (BUCS) semi-finales.
The match started with blue-ish skies, a bone chilling Glaswegian cold and high hopes as the Glasgow Tigers scored three touchdowns and two conversions in the first half. Dominating the field with an impressive offense and defense, the Pyros seemed to be constantly on the back foot for the first 30 minutes of play. Nevertheless, the Pyros’s came knocking with less than a minute to play, pushing into Tiger territory. Quick thinking and good anticipation quickly brought a halt to that drive as the Tigers secured an interception with under 30 seconds left to play in the half. This closed things up, and left the Tigers heading to the locker room having conceded nothing in the first half.
However, the second half saw the blue skies closed and replaced with freezing hail storm, battering both teams for nearly the entirety of both quarters. The Tigers came out onto the field in strong position to tie this one up, but were unable to put up any points in any of the opening drives. Out of nowhere, the Pyros QB set the field alight with an electric 80yrd dash for a TD, but failed to convert on the 2 point attempt. This left them trailing 20-6, with a long way to come back. Twice after this, the Tigers came after the Pyros defence with strong drives, but the Pyros put up some strong defence, stuffing the run quickly and not giving the Tigers QB any time to throw. This resulted in neither drives ending points, both being turned back over to the opposition. The Pyros were unable to capitalize though, with the Tigers defence delivering some hard hits on the run game, and holding the Pyros to no more points for the rest of the game. By the time the final whistle came, the Tigers had demonstrated their dominance, crowning this by finishing the game in possession and securing the 7th and final win of the regular season, winning the Border Conference without a scratch in the ‘L’ column.
Micheal Sinclair, University of Glasgow Tigers’ president, has said “Yes I am immensely proud of this team. This is the first year of the new league structure and it was always going to pose new challenges, even for the older guys, playing teams we hadn’t played before but the whole team has fronted up and this is the best team I’ve played with in my time at university”
Chris Sutcliffe who plays in the defensive line states ”Our effort was pretty solid to be honest. Somethings just didn’t go our way like already having to postpone the game in the first place due to dodgy weather and the weather wasn’t on anyones side at the weekend. I think if the fixtures had stayed the way they were originally the game would have been different but can’t change that now! Done and dusted and we are sitting amongst some of the top teams uk uni ball.
We have a awesome team this year, with a lot of rookies coming out looking to prove themselves as well as the old vets who are finishing up their last season or second last with the tigers so its pretty competitive. We haven’t played Aber in god knows how long…like 8+ years or something maybe more so we have no idea what we have ahead of us. We have game tape etc but that can only get you to a certain level of preparedness. All we can do is train hard this week and play as hard a game as we can at the weekend and hope things go our way. The whole squad have taken past few games seriously and are starting to realise 110% is always needed on and off the field and you can’t be messing about especially when you have guys like me who will be playing their last ever home game this weekend. Lot of pressure thats for sure but I’ve got a fuck ton of confidence in the team and their abilities and personally I think we have what we need to get to the final!”
The Glasgow Tigers will be playing Aberystwyth at home at Garscube on Sunday 8th at 12pm in the BUCS American Football semi-finals. Glasgow is already confirmed as Border Champion due to their head-to-head victory vs. Sunderland and are far ahead of 2nd place in the divison.