Lions’ win keeps them top
The Birmingham Lions made it their third tournament win in a row on Saturday after a 60-0 victory over the Derby Braves. A rainy and windswept Derby held host to the Northern Conference Round Four affair in a rematch of the Round Two match-up one month ago to the day.
Just like they did in Round Two, Birmingham took an early hold on the game. After stopping Derby on the first drive of the game, Laura Moore scampered in from close range to give the Lions an early 7-0 lead. The Lions doubled their lead on their next drive as Emelie Taylor rushed in her first touchdown of the day.
Derby’s offense showed flashes of potential all day with strong running from Verity Snell, Deb Sidebottom and Sam Hand combined with the ever present passing threat between quarterback Amy Hall and receiver Charlotte Derosa. But Birmingham, who had given up just 20 points over their last five games, had the physicality and game plan to keep the Braves offense from reaching their end zone for the third time this season.
After Laura Moore’s second rushing touchdown, the poor weather conditions finally had a big impact on the game. A botched snap and hand-off to Snell in the Braves end zone resulted in a Birmingham safety, which was capped off by Nancy Stone’s interception return for a touchdown on Derby’s next drive. The Lions took a convincing 28-0 lead into halftime, and as the wind as rain died down to start the second half, Birmingham’s passing game finally heated up. Quarterback Jo Kilby took advantage of the improved conditions to hit Taylor, De-Haven and Becky Williams, the latter who was filling in at centre due to unavailabilites, for touchdowns on three consecutive drives to begin the second half, putting any chances of a Derby comeback to bed.
Laura Moore added her third and fourth touchdowns of the day after outrunning Derby’s deep coverage to bring in two beautifully placed bombs from Kilby putting the icing on the cake for Birmingham.
Though the final score of 60-0 would suggest a mauling from the Lions, Derby will leave feeling the score is nowhere near indicative of how competitive they were in the game and will take many positives from their third tournament appearance heading forward.
The result means that Birmingham maintains a four point lead over Kingston atop of the National Standings while Derby remains in sixth place, four points off of fifth place Southampton.
Image with thanks to Garry Charles Photography and © MyLonelyTreeMedia.