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Kent Exiles Juniors Maintain Level Record

One win and one loss for the Juniors keeps them afloat

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01-08-2009

Kent Exiles Junior Kitted team held their second home tournament of the season, and the results had a familiar feel, the Exiles going down 19-0 to the London Warriors, and squeezing past the London Blitz 21-20.

The Exiles in action against the Blitz

A strangly lethargic Exiles team started slowly against the Warriors, and soon found themselves two scores adrift against a full strength Warriors side, the only real action of note a Matt Mann touchdown chalked off by the sideline for 'holding'.

Half-time defensive changes and a coverage re-alignment by Coach Bryant, led on the field by Alex Lemeur negated the opposition somewhat, and another Matt Mann TD was disallowed, the same offence, however a lot clearer this time around. The Warriors eventually found a way around the resolute defence to close the scoring.

In the second match, Exiles came out with much more intent, and strong defence, led by Joe Mulvihill led to a fumble recovery by debutant Ike Udeagbara, and from 7 yds out, Matt Mann raced into the end-zone. This was converted, and the next Blitz possession saw Joe Mulvihill crashing through his blocker to tackle the QB in the end-zone for a safety. This closed the scoring for the first half.

After the interval, the Blitz came out bristling with intent, and their defence quickly scored a safety when Matt Mann was trapped in his own end-zone after a slow hand-off. Worse was to follow though, when on their next drive the Blitz took to the air, and a long bomb found a receiver outpacing the Exile secondary. This was not converted, so the Exiles still held a slender one point lead. The Exiles, behind some strong blocking by Tom Scott, drove down the field, and again, Matt Mann found space on the sideline to sprint in for a score. Next possession however, the Blitz completed an innocuos pass under coverage, but three missed Exile tackles led to an answering score. With no conversions, the Exiles still led.

With time running out, the Exiles again drove well, and a well judged pass by QB Digby Holland found the ultra-reliable Matt Simms, who, clear of the defence, danced over the goal-line. This was assumed to be the final score, however on the first play of their next possession, a Hail Mary pass was collected by a Blitz receiver in the end-zone. The go-ahead conversion was stopped by the Exile defence, and they ran out the clock, winning a highly entertaining encounter 21-20.

This means that from the scheduled tournaments this season, the Exile Juniors have a 4-4 record, the first Junior team not to end with a losing record, although there is the possibility of a further tournament, hosted by the London Blitz on Sept 5th. Exile MVP's for the tournament were Matt Mann on offence, and George on defence.

Further information about the Junior side can be found out from www.kentexiles.co.uk.

 

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