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Kent Exiles defeat Ipswich Cardinals

The Senior team wins 35-13 in first game of season

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The Kent Exiles got their season off to a good start with a victory over old nemesis the Ipswich Cardinals by the score of 35-13.

The game started very well for the club who are based on the borders of Kent and South East London, when Mark Evans intercepted the Cardinals quarterback and returned the ball 29 yards. From there quarterback Aaron Griffiths found wideout Clive Palumbo with a 13 yard scoring pass. Rich McHugh kicked the point after, and it was an early 7-0 lead.

The second quarter was one of drives, as both teams mounted attacks, but it was the Exiles who found the endzone, this time Griffiths finding a diving Sean Starwind from 10 yards out. McHugh again kicked the point after.

It was then over to the Exiles defence after half time, as they effectively sealed the game. After a McHugh 45 yard field goal attempt fell just short the Cardinals took over on their own 3 yard line, from where Steve Collison pummeled Cardinals quarterback Byrd who fumbled for rookie youth team graduate Gary Stewart to pounce on the loose ball for a touchdown. McHugh was again good with the point after.

Then on the Cardinals next drive it was Ashley Healy who stepped up with a huge play, the officials adjudged a Byrd pass to have been backwards, and whilst the Cardinals stood aghast Healy scooped up the rolling pigskin and sprinted 66 yards for the score. McHugh was again good with the point after.

The Exiles rotated their bench into the game in the fourth quarter, and the Cardinals scored twice, Byrd found Powell with a 25 yard pass, and DuPort kicked the point after, and then it was the Cardinals defence with a big score, as the Exiles drove deep into their territory Ian Goddard made the interception at the Cardinals 2 yard line, and returned it 88 yards for the score.

Not to be denied though, quarterback Damian Marshall rallied his troops and immediately drove downfield again, this time finishing the drive with an 8 yard pass to Palumbo to underline a good performance. McHugh was again good with the point after.

Following the game Head Coach Scott Rowe commented "It was good to open our season with a win. Today showed that we have a potentially good team, but we need to improve our focus and discipline if we expect to be able to compete with the best that this highly competitive division can offer".

For full details of this season's fixtures, and to keep track on the team, check out the clubs website

Scoring Summary

1st Quarter – Exiles – Aaron Griffiths 13 yard pass to Clive Palumbo, Rich McHugh PAT Good
2nd Quarter – Exiles – Aaron Griffiths 10 yard pass to Sean Starwind, Rich McHugh PAT Good
3rd Quarter – Exiles – Gary Stewart fumble recovery in endzone, Rich McHugh PAT Good
3rd Quarter – Exiles – Ashley Healy 66 yard fumble recovery return, Rich McHugh PAT Good
4th Quarter – Cardinals – Jeffrey Byrd 25 yard pass to Powell, Troy DuPort PAT Good
4th Quarter – Cardinals – Ian Goddard 88 yard interception return
4th Quarter – Exiles – Damian Marshall 8 yard pass to Clive Palumbo, Rich McHugh PAT Good

Selected Game Statistics

Aaron Griffiths – 15 of 20, 108 yards, 2td, 1int
Damian Marshall – 7 of 10, 49 yards, 1td, 1int

Stewart Muir – 12 for 50 yards

Clive Palumbo – 9 for 74 yards, 2td
Rich McHugh – 5 for 34 yards
Sean Starwind – 4 for 30 yards, 1td

Ade Balogun – 7 tackles, ½ sack
Aaron Alexis – 5 tackles, 1 sack
Travis Bilham – 5 tackles
Joe Alexis – 5 tackles
Jerome Cole – 4 tackles
Steve Morrison – 2 tackles, 1 sack


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