On Sunday 16th February, players from the local Andover Flag Football team made their way down to the Oasis Sports Academy in Nursling, Southampton for an afternoon of non contact American flag football against the a mixed team of players from the Southampton and Portsmouth flag football teams called the Thrashers.
The game started on the state of the art 3G pitch. As the first game got under way the Thrashers took an early lead scoring a touchdown on the first 3 of their drives. Andover’s first 2 drives didn’t materialise in a first down, but valuable yards were gained by Ben Brady, Alex Brown and Jack Verling.
Andover got their first down on their 3rd drive of the game courtesy of some light footed work by John Parson with a bullet like pass from Quarterback Adam Russell. Andover’s 4th drive saw Adam Russel call a fantastic play which found No.88 Ben Brady deep inside the opposition’s half to put up the first 6 points for Andover. The Thrashers then scored on their final drive of the game ending it 32-6
The second game of the day, which was played on grass, again saw Southampton take an early lead 13-0. This wasn’t to last as Andover’s offence found their stride and delivered some great fake plays and passes, along with some great safety defence from a 14 year old Riley Lucas. Adam Russell found Ben Brady on their 4th drive to get the first down which got converted into a touchdown by Jack Verling and the extra point being had by Ben Brady.
Southampton were now on their 6th drive, and managed to find the end zone to bring the score to 19-7. The final 2 drives of the game were Andover’s for the taking. Adam managed to again find John Parsons for a first down which got converted with a stunning catch by Jack Verling to which the Thrashers had no reply.
The final drive again saw Ben Brady picking up 2 valuable downs to bring Andover within reach of a final touchdown. Ben saw out his game with a touchdown bringing Andover to within 1 point of a tie game. Adam Russell managed to find an unmarked Lee Mudd to gain the extra point and bring the game to a close at 19-19. Alex brown who played magnificently for both the offence and defence was nominated as man of the match by a very energetic coach Tyler Metcalfe.
Tyler said “I am very pleased with the progress our new players have made, they grew in confidence despite a difficult first game, showing great resilience & team spirit. We now have a platform from which to build upon & develop this squad which has lots of potential. Our focus is now on preparing to enter the League, building a strong group of players and enjoying this exciting sport.”
If you would like to have a go at flag football or just go along to watch, Andover meet at the Charlton sports pitch on Sundays.
All pictures are gratefully received by and courtesy of Mrs Sandra Cook.
Report by Gary Lucas