Watford Cheetahs opened the season with a comfortable 19-0 victory against the Ouse Valley Eagles in the first game at their new base in Hemel Hempstead.
Poor weather saw both teams struggle with turnovers and a failure to establish the pass. Ouse Valley received the ball and, despite completing a 13-yard pass, were forced to punt three plays later.
Watford’s offence fumbled in their first drive, giving the ball back to the Eagles who completed another pass and moved into the Cheetahs half.
The second quarter saw the Eagles on the Cheetahs’ two-yard line, but the Cheetah defence delivered a goaline stand to regain possession.
Momentum ran against the Cheetahs as they were forced to punt the ball back to the Eagles, but the home defence again took control of the game and pushed the Eagles back to the 30.
And the tide would shift just inside the two minute warning. The Cheetahs intercepted the ball to start again on their 20-yard line, before third down saw great reflexes in traffic to give the hosts a first down on the Eagles’ three-yard line.
Three plays later and the Cheetahs grabbed the season opening touchdown via a pin-point pass.
The Cheetahs recovered the kick-off on the Eagles’ 20-yard line after the confused Eagles failed to get on the ball.
The Cheetah quarter-back then found a target for a touchdown with a beautiful left sideline fade over outstretched arms to put the hosts 12-0 up at half-time.
In the third quarter, Ouse Valley were forced to punt. Cheetah wide reciever Frank Mayo received the ball and burst across field on his way to a dramatic 40-yard touchdown to seal the win.