AMERICAN FOOTBALL: Slow start coats Saints dear as Revolution rule

The Oxford Times: James Walter holds onto the pass to score Oxford Saints’ only touchdown James Walter holds onto the pass to score Oxford Saints’ only touchdown

Oxford Saints suffered the first defeat of their BAFL Conference National Central Division season when losing 26-6 at Shropshire Revolution.

A flying start by the hosts saw them lead 26-0 at half-time, and although Saints produced a much-improved display after the break, they had only a James Walter touchdown to show for their efforts.

Revolution got off to a blistering start, runningback Neil Jones exploding thro-ugh the middle to find the endzone for the first score.

The absence of Saints runningbacks Stephen Bentley and James Ferrigno proved crucial, with Oxford unable to make any significant gains.

It wasn’t long before the ball was back in the hands of the Shropshire quarterback, Rob McLean, who drove his team upfield and found teammate Kris Doody for a touchdown pass and a 14-0 lead.

The remainder of the first half was heavily dominated by the Revolution, who managed to score two further touchdowns, making it 26-0, as a stunned Saints side went into the mid-game break reeling.

However, after regrouping, the second half was very different.

Saints were defensively sound, preventing any more Revolution scores, while looking more dangerous in attack.

Early in the third quarter, Oxford finally found the endzone with a great drive down the field led by quarterback James Sharples, which ended with a super touchdown pass to James Walter.

Saints tried to find a way back, but Shropshire were able to keep their attackers at bay and eventually eased to victory.

Saints are next in action on June 22, when the Lincolnshire Bombers visit Abingdon Rugby Club for a 2pm kick-off.

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