The University American Football team, Tarannau, started their season with a winning record of 2-1 before Christmas break and with that brought home the coveted Welsh Bowl Trophy, their first silverware in quite a few years. However, disappointingly the team finished the season with a 3-4 record and 1 tied game, and thus missing the playoffs. This past Sunday, Tarannau played their annual Varsity fixture against the Bangor Muddogs in hopes of winning the newly established West Coast Cup (attached).
The weather was looking promising throughout the week with temperatures warming up and the sun finally making an appearance in Aberystwyth, however on Sunday morning, it was overcast and rainy, but this was not going to stop the Aber boys from taking home their second silverware of the year. Tarannau arrived early to warm-up and prepare for the big game ahead, Bangor were delayed upon arrival and so kickoff was delayed slightly.
With the Aber boys all warmed up and ready to go, the dual-GB attack by Runningbacks Curtis Williston and Joshua Culling were moving the ball successfully down field and Receiver Joshua Bryant scored on a trick play down near the goal line.
Following a missed kick, Tarannau were up 6-0. Not long after, the Bangor side came back and scored with a short run by their Quarterback. However Tarannau were not to be deterred and shut down Bangor’s attempt to go for an extra 2 points, leaving the score at 6-6. Before halftime, Tarannau punched in another score with a long touchdown run by rookie Runningback Ciaran Campbell and following an extra 2-point run by Curtis Williston, Aberystwyth went into halftime up 14-6.
In the second half the rain had stopped and the sun came out, this was also when the Aber boys showed their true talent with the defence making consistent stops and not allowing the Bangor side advance very far before being forced to turn the ball back over to Tarannau. Followed by a consistent attack by Tarannau’s offense, Aberystwyth were clearly in control of the game. Moving the ball down field with a strong running game, Aberystwyth began taking to the air and keeping Bangor’s defence honest by throwing the ball. Eventually, Tarannau scored again through a 25-yard touchdown pass from 2nd year QB Matt Goring to 3rd year Receiver Thomas Man, and after a 2-point conversion run in by Matt Goring Tarannau extended the lead to 22-6.
Tarannau’s defence continued to step up and make sure Bangor did not have a chance at a late comeback, making big hits and swarming the ball carrier. Not long after, Tarannau added yet another score with another touchdown pass, this time a 40-yarder from Matt Goring to Receiver Thomas Man for their 2nd connection on the day. And with GB Running back Curtis Williston walking into the end zone untouched on the 2-point conversion, Tarannau were up 30-6.
For the rest of the game, Tarannau held on to their 24-point lead and won the first ever West Coast Cup fixture, bringing home their second trophy of the year. Tarannau now will be taking a break from football until their new season starts next September, and they just want to say thank you to all who came out to support them throughout their season and will be back next year better and stronger.