After a disappointing opening result in Lanarkshire last week, the Junior Highland Wildcats were out to prove they can compete this season as they hosted the Edinburgh Wolves at the Bught Park in Inverness.
The home team successfully stopped Edinburgh on their opening drive however the Wildcats failed to score on their opening drive as well. It would be the Wolves that would find the endzone first with a rushing touchdown from Running Back Lewis Marshall.
The Highland side answered this with a rushing touchdown of their own from Running Back Cameron Davies who pulled the Wildcats into the lead when he converted the touchdown bringing the score to 8 – 6.
Defensively the Wildcats began to control the Wolves offense with some great tackles from Defensive End Jordan Coia and Linebackers Jamie Anderson and Lewis Meeks.
Another strong drive from the Wildcats offense in the second quarter ended with Receiver Declan Maclennan finding the endzone from a 22 yard run. On the conversion Quarterback Johnny Fowler ran into the endzone to bring the score to 16 – 6 extending the home side’s lead.
The opening drive of the second half saw Wildcats Quarterback Chris Shaw, find Tight End Erem Demirel in the endzone.
Both teams failed to score on their next few drives but it was Marshall for the Wolves that found the endzone again along with the conversion to take the score to 14-22.
More strong defensive play from the Wildcats meant that the Wolves offense were stopped in their tracks on their remaining drives, helped with a bat down from Cornerback Loudon Wheeler and Linebacker Ewan Sime along with some strong tackling from Cornerback Andrew Stark.
Fowler and Maclennan picked up two further touchdowns in the second half, both were converted to make the final score 14 – 38 to the Highland Wildcats.
Head Coach of the Edinburgh Wolves, Andrew Bourke commented, “A huge thank you to Robbie Paulin and the Highland Wildcats, a class organisation in American Football in the UK. The game was played the way it was supposed to be, fair on both sides with great passion from both teams.”
Robbie Paulin, Head Coach for the Highland Wildcats added, “Edinburgh did a fantastic job today. They were down a few key players on defense and it was impressive how their team pulled together to make up for this.
I was really pleased with how our guys performed on the day and felt that every single player contributed in the game. It has to be highlighted the hard work that my staff (along with helpers from the Youth team) put in before, during and after this game to make the day not just a success on the field, but off the field as well.”
Game day entertainment was provided by PJC Entertainment and catering by Leachkin Bakery.
Offensive MVP – Marvin Skinner (Guard)
Defensive MVP – Jordan Coia ( Defensive End)