Flag football teams wrap-up regular season

It’s down to the playoffs for the top Cayman Islands Flag Football Association’s men’s and women’s premier league teams starting 16 September. Before the post-season, the regular season wrapped up with an exciting slate of games at the Ed Bush Sports Complex in West Bay.


Maples Jaguars vs Tribe Tattoo Lady Sharks

The 2017 Premier League season had a bittersweet ending for the Maples Jaguars last Saturday, who faced the Tribe Tattoo Lady Sharks in the first match of the day. Veteran team Lady Sharks began the game on offense with notable completions by Tiffany Ebanks, Scimone Chin and Tyanna Jan. The Jaguars’ defense was alert to keep the Lady Sharks from scoring with strong performances by Somali Hall, Allison Hydes and Kara Rankine.

Once in possession of the ball, the Jaguars turned to Nikki Ebanks, who made small but significant gains for her team. Quarterback Yolanni Manzanares also earned rushing yards for the Jaguars but had her momentum taken away when Sharks’ Courtisha Ebanks intercepted a pass for a touchdown.

The Sharks took the lead in the second half of the game with catches by Keisha Anglin and Bobeth O’ Garro. However, the Jaguars remained vigilant on defense, with a notable sack by captain Alexia Williams. In the final minutes of the game, Judy Rivers bolted downfield to receive a dazzling 40-yard pass and score for her team. The Lady Sharks will advance to the playoffs after winning their last game of the regular season 12-0. The Maples Jaguars can be proud of themselves for growing this season and always displaying sportsmanship on and off the field.


Maples vs Kensington Hellcats

Maples began the game focused and after strong gains by Larue Nixon and a signature shuffle through defense by Fabio Gall, soon arrived at first and goal. Deandre Harris would be the one to score Maples’ touchdown of the day. For the Hellcats, Phil Brown moved the ball most often as running back for his team, with help from teammate Will Peguero Jr. Maples’ defensive eye, Jonathan Allen spied multiple plays to make quick tackles, as well as Jeffrey Robinson and Thomas McField-Brown. When the ball was turned over, Nigel Solomon of the Hellcats would disrupt Maples’ drive with an interception and close the second quarter.

Still in the lead, Maples turned on defensive pressure to stop their opponents during their offensive drives. However, the Hellcats’ defense did the same with an interception by Jamal Miller. Once in control of the ball, the Hellcats would chip away until Nigel Solomon was able to score a touchdown and bring the game to a tie. Pushed into overtime, Maples played aggressively by sending Kwei General to deflect an otherwise perfect pass. Maples quarterback Chris LeBlou would get a final chance at scoring but Nigel Solomon picked the ball once again. The game ended with a tie of 6-6.


Subway Lady Predators vs Greenhouse Lynx

Lynx opened on offense. Ashley Frederick made her first appearance on offense as running back and made multiple gains throughout the game. Denicia Cranston would also earn yards for the second-place team but Lady Predator Shakira Davis would interrupt the Lynx offense with her first interception of the season.

Once in possession of the ball, Jordyn Williams of the Lady Predators would bolt for gains downfield but did not score due to tackles by Erica Bosch. She would later be avenged by teammate Monique Roberts who was able to intercept a ball thrown by Bosch once Lynx returned to offense. The Lynx were able to regain the ball on offense in time to send Latoya Cover speeding across the goal line for a touchdown.

The Lady Predators would open the second half on offense but soon lost possession of the ball due to an interception by Lynx player Marleena Smith, which earned the team another six points. Both teams would continue the game with very strong defensive performances, primarily from Lady Predators Amaris Smith and Sandy Seymour. The game ended 12-0 in favour of the Lynx.


HSM Vipers vs Red Stripe Wolverines

First place seed HSM Vipers took on the Red Stripe Wolverines for the most heated game of the day. Both teams are very familiar with each other, with starting players from both sides being veterans on the women’s national team. This was evident throughout the first half of the game, with defense taking full control. Nikita Saintvil kept a steady watch around Vipers’ plays and in turn HSM’s Racquel McLean proved to be a constant disruption to Wolverines’ offense.

The power struggle continued throughout the game despite notable runs from Vipers’ token players Shenel Gall and Alicia Dixon. Wolverines’ in turn sent Petulia Hayles and Arissa McField forward to attempt to score for them but were also unsuccessful. The game spiraled into overtime and it was Maggie Ebanks of the HSM Vipers who would fight for the only touchdown of the day to bring the Vipers to victory, followed by a one point conversion by Alicia Dixon.


MaplesFS Knights vs Island Heritage Predators

Finally, the MaplesFS Knights took on the Island Heritage Predators for the closing game of the day. The Predators relied on vets Baron Solomon and Oliver Parker to move the ball during the first quarter but it would be Jaryd Bodden of the Predators to shuttle through the defense and put them close to the goal line. Avery Ebanks would go for the touchdown next and earn the early lead for the Predators. He would be supplemented by another touchdown by Baron Solomon and extra point kicked by Roy Forbes.

The Knights’ fresh-faced quarterback Bruce Hayles took helm on offense and was able to send the ball downfield with strong passes and rushing yards himself. However, he had to contend with Predators Jordan Powery’s consistent, quick tackles and sacks, making it difficult for the Knights to score.

Once back on offense, Avery Ebanks kept his rhythm with another touchdown. The Predators looked to Kaleb Ebanks to score their final touchdown of the day and cement their win with an 27-0 score.

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