Juniors stay top with strong home win

May 3rd, 2016

Pirates juniors - #32 Jack Hunter courtesy of Duncan Gray, Duncolm PhotographyEast Kilbride Pirates 36 Newcastle Vikings 12

EKP juniors set out to build on their week one win over Highland Wildcats as they faced Newcastle Vikings on Sunday. However, it was the visitors who were first to show, as they took the lead on a 39-yard fumble recovery and return by Ben Evans. The extra point kick was blocked leaving Newcastle 6-0 ahead. It was then midway through the first period before the Pirates’ defense repaid the favour. This time it was Adam Fitzpatrick who returned an interception 47 yards to score, Nick Kosic’s 2-point pass fell incomplete to tie the scores at 6 apiece.

The second quarter was a closely fought encounter, with both sides playing strongly on defense. There were six changes of possession before either team managed a first down. It was the Pirates who achieved that on a long pass from Kosic to Struan Bailey, taking the ball to the Vikings’ 11-yard line. On the next play Will Price ran the ball home for the go ahead score.  Jack Hunter ran in the 2-pointer to make it 14-6 to the Pirates at the break.

Pirates juniors #10 Nick Kosic courtesy Duncan Gray, Duncolm PhotographyA penalty against Newcastle on the second half kick-off saw them backed up deep into their own territory. Two sacks by Craig Sanders forced them further toward their own goal line, before Darren Robert blocked the ensuing punt and Sanders picked up the loose ball to score on a 12-yard return. Kosic ran in the extra points as the lead became 22-6. Newcastle still weren’t done though, and after a sequence of five penalties in six plays had left East Kilbride in a 2nd-and-41 situation at their own 3, the Vikings narrowed the gap with yet another defensive TD.

Sam Montgomerie’s pass appeared to hit off one of his linemen’s helmet and fall to the ground incomplete. However it was ruled a fumble and the Vikings’ Charlie Wilton recovered the loose ball in the endzone. The 2-point conversion failed but there was still everything to play for as the game moved into the final period with the score at 22-12.

The fourth quarter started badly for Newcastle. A sack and a fumble pushed them back and then a high snap on the punt attempt saw them turn the ball over at the 21-yard line. The Pirates immediately capitalised when Price ran home his second TD of the day, although Hunter’s 2-point run was stopped short. Later in the period this scenario was played out once more. Another wayward Vikings’ punt snap was recovered by Jamie Clark at the Newcastle 7 yard line. Successive runs by Kosic took the ball to within 1 yard of the endzone before Hunter plunged over to score. The same player ran in the conversion to complete the scoring.

Game report by Bill Campbell
Photos courtesy Duncan Gray, Duncolm Photography




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