Lanarkshire Longhorns American Football team produced a strong performance at Beltane on Sunday against the toughest opposition in their Division. Highland Wildcats had travelled down from Inverness to see if they could put a stop to the Longhorns regular season winning streak, unbeaten since a tie with Highland in April last year, but the Lanarkshire side were up to the challenge.
Right from the kick-off Lanarkshire showed their intent as Grant Winter collected the ball and returned it 79 yards for a touchdown only seconds into the game. Winter was to add another two scores, both over 60 yards rushing with points after added by himself and Jamie Blades to bring the score to 22-0 at half-time.
On the Defensive side of the ball the Longhorns displayed their customary resilience, Dylan Yardley and Nathan Carr leading the way with over 20 tackles from the linebacker position, and Ewan Sinton stemming the Highland attack at Safety. Ryan Campbell collected his first interception and a fumble recovery by Robert Poore both played a key part in limiting the Wildcats Offence.
Into the second half some concerted pressure by the Wildcats paid dividends as they notched up two scores in the third quarter, and the scoreline began to look more as expected before the game. Lanarkshire weren’t done however as Stephen Cranston pulled one back with a QB sneak near the goal line before combining on a passing play with Winter for his fifth touchdown of the game.
The Longhorns Defence once more had to withstand some concerted pressure from the Wildcats going into the fourth, and despite allowing one more score before the final whistle, the Longhorns came out of this contest 42-20 winners, putting them in a strong position ahead of the return fixture in Inverness at the end of June.