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Junior Exiles tame the Wolves


The Kent Exiles Juniors kicked off their 2015 campaign on Saturday 25th April against the Buckinghamshire Wolves in Maidenhead. After a long and hard preseason, the young Exiles were ready to attack the season ahead. With a good number of rookies, including players graduating from our Youth and Flag teams, combined with experience and great sideline support, the mood was positive. The game got off to the perfect start, with the Wolves fumbling on the first play. The Exiles Offense took to the field, and four plays later QB James Cook found Receiver Yani Ourabah in the corner of the end zone for the game's first score. The conversion attempt was missed. 6-0 Exiles. After both Offenses taking the field once more, the Wolves found themselves in excellent field position, punching the ball in to the end zone for the tying score. PAT was good. 8-6 Wolves.  After three and outs by both teams, the Exiles were back in the lead with rookie Henry Young taking a quick slant 30 yards to the end zone. Incredible catch from Ourabah over multiple defenders, gave the Exiles a 14-8 lead at half time.

The feeling at this point of the game was that the Exiles should be dominating more than the score line reflected. Coaches regrouped and made some key strategic adjustments but before this had time to take affect, the Wolves implemented their own adjustments, scoring on a long TD run on their first series of the half and tying the score at 14-14. Frustration was building and the Exiles Offense came out with real purpose, determined to take back the lead. From within Exiles territory, a short pass from Cook found 'speedster' Sean Seeds, who took it almost 60 yards to score. PAT attempt missed. 20-14 Exiles. The Wolves responded quickly with 14 unanswered points and maintained a 28-20 lead well in to the fourth quarter. A key stop from the Defense with strong tackling from Ian Whitehead, Bryn Cotter, Liam Riley, Imraj Singh, and Savior Onourah gave the Offense the ball in great field position. A deep pass down the right sideline was caught again by Henry Young, with great blocking up front by Hamish Elliott, Jack Clark and Josh Proud, the Wolves lead cut to 28-26. The crucial 2 point conversion was caught and powered in to the end zone by Yani Ourabah. 28-28.

The Wolves' sideline nerves were clearly building; the Exiles Defense soon turned this in to full blown panic as the Wolves' Offense stopped moving the ball completely.Strong tackling by Nathan Wilson, Aaron Khan and Ernie Cindrak meant the Exiles offense were given the ball one last time. With two minutes left in the game, veterans and rookies combined with a final push for victory. Great blocking and running from Tom Lee, Han Whitmore, Jake Whatson,Ed Callow and Regan Alexis provided the opportunity for Henry Young to make a spectacular diving catch in the end zone to put the game away. The Exiles Defense sealed the victory with one last great defensive stand.

A satisfying,if at times tense victory, providing a valuable learning opportunity and a well fought win. Coach Alexis was glad to get his young team's first game nerves out of the way and praised them for their determination and desire to win. Next game Essex Spartans away - Sunday 3rd May. Final score at Maidenhead Exiles 34 Wolves 28.


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