Hot, sticky and difficult to work with… but enough about Head Coach Elliott – the conditions for both the Cheetahs and Bury Saints made for an interesting game which ultimately ended in an impressive Bury dominating 44-0. It did not look like it was going to end that way for much of the first half though. Given the heat, the Cheetahs D put up a big performance to keep the prolific Saints offence at bay for the entire 1st Quarter. Unfortunately, our own offence was unable to get the ball moving much early on. A number of 3-and-out drives and a Bury interception on a pass play led to the defence soon getting worn out by the time spent on the field in the heat. It looked like the Cheetahs luck might be in when a Saints TD was called back by a flag, before #47 Jason Wells made a crucial bat-down in the endzone…but it wasn’t to last. Early in the 2nd after another 3-and-out for the Cheetahs offence, a big punt return was followed by a well-executed pitch play that resulted in the first 6 of the day for the Saints.
An unfortunate interception on the next Cheetahs drive was turned into a passing touchdown just a few plays later. The Cheetahs had been resilient thus far, but this was a crucial point in the game and Bury began to churn out the style which has made them a formidable outfit so far this season. A similar passing touchdown for the Saints swiftly followed and an interception on the next Cheetahs drive really killed the momentum for the away team just as the half was coming to a close, with the Saints managing to add another 6 on a clever draw play before the break.
The second half saw some renewed vigour from a Cheetahs O that has thus far failed to get firing. However, it was against the backdrop of two further Saints TDs – a short run, and a long passing play that eluded the Cheetahs secondary. A good drive with some hard running allowed the Cheetahs a rare redzone opportunity. The offence unsuccessfully tried to punch it in on downs 1 and 2 before turning to the air on third, but by this time luck had deserted the away team and the play resulted in another interception. Thankfully running back #30 Adam Adeniji was alert to the danger and prevented a sure pick-6 with a crucial tackle.
By the fourth, both teams had started to flag in the heat and the tempo was noticeably reduced. Both teams traded drives followed by punts, before the impressive Saints QB added another notch to his belt with the final passing TD of the day. That was all she wrote. It wasn’t the greatest day for the Cheetahs despite some flashes of genuine improvement from Game 1, but the Saints looked every bit the impressive outfit that had been expected and we wish them all the best of the luck… except for when they make the trip to Hertfordshire, that is.