Depleted Grangemouth Colts perform well in Sheffield

Steven Cliffe and Mark Wallace running an Option play against Nottingham Honeybadgers.
Steven Cliffe and Mark Wallace running an Option play against Nottingham Honeybadgers.

The Grangemouth Colts travelled to Sheffield last weekend to take part in the British American Football Association’s National Finals day for Flag Football.

The Colts, created within the Grangemouth Flag Football Club just last year, earned their place as runners-up in the Division 1 league in Scotland.

Billy Corner stopping Charlie Williams of London Smoke

Billy Corner stopping Charlie Williams of London Smoke

The idea was to give some of the back-up players more meaningful game time to help them develop with a view to getting a place in the Broncos team.

The Colts would join in with other development teams, plus the other teams from around Scotland who had not quite made the elite level.

With some more established teams in their division, the club were ambitious about how their new team would do, but to come second in the division was a bit of a surprise. That may be the reason that there were only six of their 13 players available to travel to a very prestigious event.

With regular quarterback Andy Brown out of the team, the Colts looked to Steven Cliffe to take on that responsibility.

Gordon McSherry played through injury whilst Louise Donnelly was one of the growing number of female players taking part in the National Finals. Louise played all but one down all day and was rewarded with a few sacks on defence.

Billy Corner, one of the people who seems to have benefitted from getting game time in the Colts, had a great day on defence.

Mark Wallace had an immense day. He was the most productive receiver on offence and, as he has done all season, played every defensive down.

The sixth plater on the team was their coach, David Mooney. At 62 years old, he can still mix it with the best of them and played virtually every offensive down and spelled people on defence.

The results on the day went pretty much as expected. In their first game they played the top seeds from the Southern divisions, the London Smoke. The result was a 26-0 win for the Smoke, but as a team who regularly won by over 50 points, the Colts defence must have been doing something right.

In their next game, the Colts faced the Nottingham Honeybadgers. Another loss by the Colts against a team who regularly feature in the post-season, 48-0. The game was actually much tighter than the score suggests.

In their final game of the day they faced the Bedford Blackhawks. On another day the Colts would have made more of a game of it, but the warm weather meant the six Colts players were running on empty, especially when you consider that each of the teams they played had at least 10 players.

Club head coach Fraser Thomson said: “I’m very proud to have been the coach of this team today, despite the results. They gave everything for each other today and I couldn’t ask more.

“Work for the Promotion Playoff starts now.”

The Promotion Playoff will see the Colts as runners-up in Division 1 play against the Premier’s bottom club, the Clyde Comets, for a place in next year’s Premier League on September 16.