Reigning Champs Make The Perfect Start

The Manchester Titans Flag Team travelled to Nottingham for the start of the 2019 BAFA Season, looking to defend their MEC Premier Division Championship.

Game 1 vs Sheffield Vipers – the Vipers started strongly with the departure of QB Keith Woodley greatly over-estimated, as he led them downfield for an early 6-0 lead on their first drive. But the Titans hit back immediately with QB Alan Mead finding WR Ben Nuttall for their first TD of the season. Andrew Yuen added the XP for a 7-6 lead. The game would go back and forth in the 1st half with both offenses scoring freely, but David McInally stepped in front of a Woodley pass returning it for a TD, combined with 3 TD catches from Yuen, allowed the Titans to pull away. Another Nuttall TD in the 2nd half plus 2 TD catches by Jonatan Pan Gago with conversions from Rick McEwen and David Briscall pushed the Titans to 51 points. But the Titans defense, led by Elliot King Davies with 3 sacks held to Vipers to 26, as the Titans won comfortably 51-26.

Game 2 vs Manchester Crows – always a big game, with the bragging rights for the city at stake. The Titans defense forced a turnover – Dev Samba intercepting, and the Offense took over, moving the ball efficiently down the field for McInally to score on a receiving TD from short range. TDs by McEwen and Yuen gave the Titans a 19-12 lead with seconds to play in the 1st half and the Crows driving for the tying score. McInally made game-changing interception which he returned for another TD and a massive momentum shift. The Titans went into half-time 25-12 up and got the ball to start the 2nd half. On the first play, Mead threw a bomb to Yuen for the TD, Nuttall added the XP and 32-12 lead. Mead threw further TDs to Nuttall, Yuen and Briscall whilst the Big Blue Wrecking Crew held the Crows scoreless until the last minute of the 2nd half, repeated knocking down passes in the endzone as they made several goal-line stands. 2 Sacks from Tom Brook were the highlights from a great defensive performance as the Titans won 51-20 to take their record to 2-0 and the lead of the division.
It’s difficult to point out individuals from such a great team performance but statistically speaking Andrew Yuen in his first tournament stood out with 6 TDs and 2 XPs, Ben Nuttall had 3 TDs and 1 XP, David McInally had 3 TDs and 3 Interceptions, Elliot King Davies had 3 Sacks and Alan Mead had 14 TD Passes.
Andrew Yuen catching one of his 6 TDs on his Titans Debut.
Next up for the Titans is a trip to the Netherlands where both the Adult Flag & Women’s Teams will be competing in the King Bowl Tournament in Utrecht in early May. Then the Titans head up to Edinburgh for the next round of fixtures of the regular season.
Titans Defensive Captains David McInally (#20) and Leigh Kerrigan (#28).
Pictures courtesy of Will Gleed