Trinity College 7-0 UCD
UCD American Football will be disappointed with their performance against Dublin University in Santry yesterday. The loss brings UCD’s record in the Colours series to 1-5.
On winning the coin toss, Trinity College opted to receive the ball however they were unable to connect on several attempts. UCD’s rookie quarter back Tom Donovan took a while to settle into his first game but nevertheless showed talent and composure despite an inexperienced offensive line. The passing game was limited by high winds but both Donovan and veteran QB Colin O’Meara finished the game with roughly 70 yards apiece.
The first half was a showcase of defence for UCD. 6 sacks were made, tackles for a loss were common and the Trinity offence failed to complete on numerous occasions. An interception by UCD player Ciaran O’Connell, sale late in the second quarter, brought UCD to the 20 yard line with a little over a minute to play. As the offence took over, wide receiver Shane Kenny was awarded a touchdown in the endzone only to have the score rescinded moments later after a lengthy discussion between the referees. QB Donovan was sacked in the final play of the drive and UCD, out of timeouts, went into the half scoreless. Running back Dave Murphy saw some success on stretch run plays and several pass receptions but after one decent rushing drive UCD switched to focus on their passing game.
Second half saw changes to UCD’s defensive line with the defensive ends lining up over the tackles leaving the guards free to block the middle linebackers which gave Trinity an opportunity to run the ball up the middle. Indeed, Trinity seemed to come into their form in the second half with a number of runs from veteran RB Rob McDowell. UCD’s goal-line defence which had held strong for the first half could not stop McDowell running it in for 6. Trinity’s PAT attempt was good bringing the tally to 7-0. UCD’s defence seemed unable to stop the run game as time after time Trinity pounded the football up the sidelines. UCD still managed 2 further sacks: Eoin Feely racking up an impressive 4 on the day.
Trinity’s passing game was effectively non-existent. A number of attempts were made but in the end Trinity’s offence revolved around their running back as their offensive line seemed unable to cope with UCD’s defence.
Unfortunately the game was continually stopped for penalties. Flags were thrown almost every second play for holding, false starts, encroachment and illegal formations. Given both teams’ lack of experience this could have been expected but the lack of discipline in other areas might be a cause for concern. Face-masking was called regularly against both teams and the result cost UCD dearly throughout the match. Trinity seemed unable to keep their kick-offs in bounds giving UCD an opportunity to start at the 40 rather than attempt run backs.
The IAFL will decide on the rearranging of divisions later today. Early reports are indicating that two divisions will be formed to replace the three last year. UCD are expected to be placed in the southern division alongside Trinity, Dublin Rebels and UL Vikings; the latter two contested the Shamrock Bowl last year. UCD came sixth overall in last years competition which contained ten teams and will be looking to improve on their 4-4 record in this coming season.
The colours match was organised by Dublin University American Football Club and held in aid of Temple Street Children’s Hospital.