Rebels Survive To Stay Perfect – Week 12 AFI Round Up

A beautiful sunny weekend brought us another round of exciting Irish American Football action as the Rebels completed a series sweep of UCD, Westmeath shut out the Knights and the Crusaders took another step towards the playoffs with a close victory over the Razorbacks. The Trojans also made it two wins from two in their return home as they handled the Cowboys without much trouble. It is however that time of year when teams begin to lose players to injuries, holidays and post exam exodus and unfortunately two fixtures were unable to go ahead as a result. Both the Antrim Jets & Trinity forfeited their respective fixtures, which is disappointing for all involved.  But not to worry, there’s still plenty of football to catch up on!

Dublin Rebels 25 – UCD 24

The students came out looking for revenge after their week one loss and started strong; up 18-13 at the half. In the third meeting of these sides in less than 12 months, UCD QB Arun Mooney was on fine form, connecting with Darragh Mooney & Tom Donovan for 2 touchdowns apiece. The Rebels were not going to be outdone as Ty Henry hit his favourite targets Greg Johnson and David King for scores, as well as running one in himself. The TD to King was the comeback score to make it 25-24, leaving UCD with little time to respond. UCD crucially were unable to convert a single 2 point conversion, and that was the difference maker in a tight affair. Defense also played a key role in this game – Jason Kolokithis had 3 interceptions for the Rebels while Rory O’Dwyer and Austin Klemm made big plays for UCD.

Courtesy of Charisse Mae

UL Vikings 30 – Antrim Jets 0 (Jets Forfeit)

Nobody likes a forfeit, and this must be a disappointing outcome for both sides. Due  to injuries and unavailability of players the Jets were forced to concede a walkover to UL this week, giving the University side an automatic 30 point victory. For the Vikings, a tune up before taking on Division Leading Louth next weekend in a key game would have been most beneficial. Instead, they will need to be grateful for the rest week that keeps bodies fresh as they head into what is sure to be a preview of the Division One Championship game.  The Jets are still winless at 0-6 on the season, having conceded over 250 points and will be asking themselves if they can hack it at this level.

Westmeath Minotaurs 27 – Belfast Knights 0

In a rescheduled game from Week One, the Knights travelled to the midlands to take on a Westmeath side they got the better of a few weeks prior. Joe Kinahan got things underway for the home side, hitting Jack Lynch for the opening score on a 20 yard passing TD and followed it up by taking it in himself from 1 yard out on a QB sneak.  Kinahan connected with Lynch once again before the break to make it 21-0 to the Minotaurs at the half. The Knights ultimately could not mount a comeback, and the game was put beyond reach when Shaun Dalton(playing back up corner we may add)  sealed the win in dramatic fashion for Westmeath with an 80 yard pick six.  This is a much needed victory for the Minotaurs, who are proving week in and out that they belong in the top flight.

Courtesy of Conor Brennan

Belfast Trojans 26 – Craigavon Cowboys 0

After being tested on the road last week, the Trojans returned home and promptly defeated the Cowboys.  This was the first home win of the season for the Belfast side, as they move to 4-2 on the season and stay well within playoff contention. Star Running Back Mo Ramadan had a hat trick of touchdowns on offense, and Wide Receiver James Lynn earned a fourth while a defensive shutout prevented the Cowboys from putting up any points. The Cowboys have only mustered 12 points on the season and are truly on the brink of elimination from the premier division. The Trojans on the other hand are pushing hard for a playoff spot and with a month to go in the regular season, every victory and every point is sure to count! The OG Belfast Boys have the added advantage of playing their remaining games at home, and we expect the matchup against the Rebels on June 24th to be one of the best games of the season!

Cill Dara Crusaders 14  NI Razorbacks 12

A battle from start to finish, the 20 man Crusaders side withstood the 45 strong Razorbacks at home to claim a narrow victory and keep themselves in playoff contention. Crusaders scores came from Jordan Farrell to Ben Costello on a 40 yard swing pass while his second went to Luke Carey. Farrell also rushed for the 2 point conversion, giving his team the finest of margins. The Razorbacks responded with rushing touchdowns by both Alex Kusmirek and Mark Thompson and will be disappointed to lose a close one on the road. Coach Gareth Millar credited his “outstanding defese” after the game, who undoubtedly made things extremely difficult for the home side. The Razorbacks are still in the hunt, but will need wins if they want to be still playing football in July.

Courtesy of Paul McIlwaine

Main Photo Credit Gregory Ufnal

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