In another triple header, the Saints were facing off against the Blitz at the newly refurbished James Miller Oval.
In true Saints fashion, the team looked to their return unit to provide them with a solid start with Luke Hegney charging up the field for 28 yards. As struggles persisted in the passing game, Quarterback Scott Collins looked to the run to begin his first drive. With Doug Stewart failing to make positive yards in the first two rush attempts and on 3rd & long, Collins found Chris Clarkson off a tipped pass directed to Hegney for a 25-yard gain. Another two rush attempts for zero yards and an incompletion put Collins at 4th & 10 with 30 yards to go. Opting to go for it, Collins found a wide open Deven Wake on a fade for the rookie’s first touchdown of the season. The subsequent point after attempt was nullified by a strong Blitz defensive front.
The Blitz came out with their rushing attack but found no room as AJ Wright could do no wrong, collecting his first of 3 sacks for the day placing the Blitz on their 29-yard line and forcing a punt. An ensuing scuffle saw ejections on both sides of the field, an unacceptable turn of events. One failed drive later, saw the Saints punting away.
Opening up with an air attack, the Blitz import Quarterback gathered first down after first down on long passes amassing 63 yards from three completions. With both teams heating up due to some questionable decisions, the Saints gave away an unsportsmanlike penalty providing a crucial first down to the Blitz whom were able to run it in for their first touchdown of the day. Point after no good, both teams end the first quarter tied at 6 points apiece.
The second quarter saw unproductive offenses on both sides of the ball as the Saints only scored on one of four drives whilst the Blitz similarly needed three attempts to score off the back of an interception. A point after by the Blitz placed them ahead going in to half time14-12.
The second half produced an array of incomplete passes with the Blitz relying on their defence, raking in a further 3 interceptions including one on the back of a questionable Clarkson throw. The Blitz capitalised on the costly turnovers stacking on a further two touchdowns ending the game 26-12.
With defence holding steadfast but injuries slowly eating away at personnel, the Saints will need to look at a bunch of rookies to step up and fill the void. The offensive woes will be addressed in the upcoming week with the game against the Jets set to be a battle of the rookies.
FINAL SCORE: SAINTS 12 – 26 BLITZ
In other games, the Saints Juniors, decimated by injuries, lost 56-0 to an experienced Blitz Juniors team and the Saints Women’s lost 8-0 to a versatile Blitz Women’s team.
Most Saintly Performance – Josh “J2” Marsden
Stepping up to become the defensive general on the back of several injuries, J2 rallied the defence, communicating well and only allowing the Blitz a poor 1.5 yards per carry on the ground with a team total of 28 tackles and 3 sacks on the day.