By Josh Haslam and Nathan Stilwell
The University of Glasgow’s American Football team, the Tigers, stormed the semi-finals on Sunday 15th with an impressive 35 – 12 win against Aberystwyth. Continuing their 8th consecutive win streak, this recent win pushes the Tigers into the final of the Northern Divisional Cup.
The game kicked off slowly with a the tigers receiving kickoff but unable to draw first blood. Defence had other things in mind. With Aberystwyth’s opening drive the tigers D scored the first points of the game, with Tiger DB 23 making an outstanding play on an Aberystwyth pass and taking it to the house. Tigers defence started the game with a huge statement of intent, and did not stop there. With the second attacking drive from Aberystwyth they forced the fumble and recovered the ball, going on the offence again. With the offence struggling to make ground, Aberystwyth had the ball back, but as before, the tigers forced the fumble and retook control. This time though Tigers took the advantage and turned it into points. The day went from bad to worse for the away team, with a punt snap going long over the punters head and landing the tigers deep in opposing territory. With this, the Tigers QB and WR connected on a perfect pitch and catch to take the Tigers three scores up to the road team. When the half time came, the Tigers were 21-6 up, with Aberystwyth scoring a touchdown but unable to make the 2 point conversion.
With the Tigers dominating so ferociously on both sides of the ball in the first half, a repeat of that would send them clear and away into the final. It didn’t start as hoped however as the first point attempt of the half ended in a muffed field goal. The tigers defence held strong though and forced the 4th turnover of the game, showing that the interval hadn’t weakened their resolve. This lead to even more Tiger points, putting them at a resounding 28-6 lead, with the game quickly becoming out of reach. The lead didn’t seem to make anyone complacent however, as minutes later the Tigers defence stormed through the Aberystwyth offensive line and forced a sack over 15 yards back.
With Aberystwyth wavering on every front, Tigers scored another TD, taking them to 35-6, wth surely no way back. Aberystwyth managed one more TD, and followed it trying for an onside kick, but when the Tigers recovered, it cemented the game and allowed Glasgow to take the Victory Formation and kneel the game out. With a superb team effort from every member of the Tigers, the stand out performance game from number 6 of the Tigers, charging his way to two rushing TD’s and being an offensive powerhouse, forcing the Aberystwyth defence to focus attentions and open up the Glasgow pass game. Dominating every aspect of the game, it ended on a pick six, two passing TD’s and two rushing TD’s, with the final score at 35-12.
Michael Sinclair, captain of the University Of Glasgow Tigers, has said “I am very happy with the teams performance in the semi-final, I was a bit nervous we would start slowly but getting a pick six in the first few minutes really settled us down and we were in full control from there.”
Sinclair went on to say “I feel we are getting more recognition, a lot more clubs are aware of us and how we are doing and I think the social network support at Glasgow is great, it makes it really easy to keep up with other teams and how they are doing.”
The Glasgow Guardian asked Sinclair if he felt the club received adequate funding from GUSA, despite being one of the newer and less known sports clubs, Sinclair replied “With regards to funding, I have been working very closely with GUSA this year and it is a very tough situation for them to fund all 49 clubs. Since we only field one team and rugby can field 3 to 4 teams they still are a bigger club. I would love more funding since our sport is very expensive to run, with having to pay referees and ambulances at every home game, then a coach for away games, GUSA do all they can for us. While I would love for our success to be recognised financially sadly GUSA can’t feasibly do that”
If the Tigers beat Sheffield Hallam University on Sunday 22nd March, the team will will the Northern Division Cup and gain promotion to Premier North