Butchers 14 – 54 Wolverines
Naturally there was a lot of hype surrounding this game in the weeks prior to it. For whatever reasons, the relationship between the Butchers and the Wolverines has always been tense. Even in my time here there have been some tough regular season battles and two semi-finals, all of which have been tinged with an extra animosity. Last year we put an end to the Butchers’ hopes of a seventh consecutive championship at the semi-final stage, having lost to them in the regular season.
This year there was added interest in the game as our former head coach and defensive coordinator both now coach at the Butchers, as do some of our former players. From what I understand, this was hyped up in the media coverage before the game.
One of the benefits of not speaking Finnish is that I cannot understand any of the comments or articles that are written by various media sources or fans here. It is nice to eliminate the external pressures completely, because it enables me to only concern myself with the opinions that actually matter.
Apparently there had been some quite scathing criticisms levelled at our team this week, concerning our performances thus far in the season. It was fantastic that we were able to secure a comfortable win and play very well to achieve it. We feel like we are gaining momentum every week and with the two biggest games of the regular season next in line, we are happy to be playing as well as we are. I don’t know what the fallout from the game has been but I’m also glad that none of us seem to care.
I was glad to see Jay score a TD this week on offence. He ran the ball in from 52 yards out when he was given his chance on offence. However he wouldn’t have come close if it weren’t for two huge blocks on the play, both of which were executed by my fellow Brit, Mike Andrew. The whole offence did a great job all day.
On defence we were fantastic once again. The pass rush was phenomenal from our front four and the opposing QB had to work very hard to avoid sacks. He did so very well, but we still got him more than a few times. Our defensive backfield also adjusted really well this week. We had three of our four starters from the Trojans game out through injury, but we have some great strength in depth and were able to field a strong unit.
Attention now turns to the Roosters this week. We’re back on the Velodrome for the Helsinki derby and the team is buzzing. I have never seen so much energy from a Wolverines team as I do right now and it is inspiring confidence in everyone.
Unfortunately I was forced to sit out most of the game against the Butchers, which was extremely tough to do. I managed to get on the field at one stage but with an MRI scan on Tuesday, it was best to play safe. Luckily the scan did not show anything major so I am cleared to play for the rest of the season. Any athlete will tell you how tough it is being injured. I’m ecstatic that I will be on the field this week.
The Butchers and Trojans games were both shown live on Urho TV in Finland. The full videos from the games can now be seen below.
Butchers v Wolverines
Wolverines v Trojans
All photos courtesy of Riku Flink.