Junior Pirates continue unbeaten run
June 18th, 2018
East Kilbride Pirates 58 – Merseyside Nighthawks 8
The junior Pirates continued their unbeaten start to the season with a comprehensive win over the Nighthawks.
East Kilbride received the opening kick-off and took just three plays to open their account. Sam Montgomerie connected with Fraser McDonald and the tall receiver raced home for a 63-yard TD. Montgomerie also completed to Scott McKigen for the 2PAT and an early 8-0 lead. The Pirates second possession brought more points, but at a cost. Montgomerie pulled his hamstring while running for a first down.
McKigen stepped in at QB and the first thing he did was pass to Ben Braidwood for a 16-yard TD. The same duo also added the 2 extra points, stretching the lead to 16 points. The Nighthawks response was short lived, going 3-and-out. Their misfortune continued when a low snap on the punt attempt saw Max Corbett corral the punter at the visitor’s 7-yard line. Jack Cochrane duly ran the ball home for the 3rd TD of the 1st Quarter.
Just 2 plays after the restart Michael Kearney pulled in an interception near midfield to regain possession for the Pirates. This led to another score for the home side, with McKigen completing a 30-yarder to Struan Bailey on 4th Down. Another interception, this time by Callum Ferguson allowed EK to add even more points in the first period. McKigen kept the ball to cross the line from 22 yards before passing to Braidwood for the 2PAT leaving the visitors trailing 36-0 as the game moved into the second quarter.
The Pirates looked set to increase their lead early in the period, only for McKigen to be picked off at the Merseyside 1-yard line. Robert Welti returned the interception to the Nighthawks’ 13. From there, it took just one play to get on the scoreboard. Running Back Jacob Diaba broke free and as everyone stopped, assuming he had stepped out of bounds, he had enough savvy to play to the whistle and ran the ball home from 77 yards. QB Jensen Fairhurst also ran in the 2PAT to reduce the deficit.
Any relief was only temporary however, with the Pirates’ offensive juggernaut continuing to dominate. McKigen connected with Ssarien Liddell from 5 yards for TD number 6 and he found Bailey for the conversion. A second Ferguson interception soon had the ball back in Pirates’ hands and a 4-yard Cochrane run concluded a short drive. Cochrane also ran in the extra points to leave the score at 52-8 going into the break.
With a “running clock” operating in the second half, Q3 shot past, with only a Kearney fumble recovery to note. In the fourth period another fumble recovery, by Michael Girvan this time around, set up a short field. McKigen took advantage and passed to Christian Rubuga for the final TD of the day. There was just time for Ferguson to snare his 3rd pick of the game and allow his team-mates to see out the game.
Next up for the young team will be the visit of Manchester Titans U19s on July 8, kick off is 12pm at GHA Rugby Club.
Game report by Bill Campbell
Photos courtesy of Duncan Gray, Duncolm Photography
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