The line-up for the impending British American Football Association NFC1 North Division have been announced and the newly merged Northumberland Vikings, and their new Head Coach Mike Sholars, can look forward to an interesting campaign.
Trips to Yorkshire to face the Yorkshire Rams and Leeds Bobcats, a game with the Lancashire Wolverines and added spice fixtures against the Glasgow Tigers and a mouth-watering local derby with the Gateshead Senators await the Druid Park side.
Running from April 15 through to the championship matches in late-August, early-September the new season, for the Vikings at least, will be a one to watch following the merger late last year of the Northumberland Lightning and Newcastle Vikings.
Speaking of the announcement of who the Vikings will face, Chairman Mick Tyler said: “It’s going to be slightly harder this season (on the minor restructure)
“We now play each other home and away and it will be two from six instead of two from five who progress.
“As for our opponents, some we know rather well; Leeds Bobcats we played against and came into the league together in 2014, and Glasgow Tigers are old adversaries having played them five times, winning on each occasion.
“The Yorkshire Rams we played last season, winning once, so looking forward to playing them again whilst the Lancashire Wolverines are an unknown force but, coming down from the Premiership, they should have something about them.
“As for Gateshead Senators, well what can we say, with it being a derby we’ll just have to see how that goes.”
New Head Coach, Mike Sholars added: “I’m quite surprised at some of our opponents, particularly the Gateshead Senators.
“I didn’t know they would be in our division this season and their Head Coach, Gary Marshall, I believe has been with them for like, twenty years, so is well established.
“He’ll certainly put together a competitive team on the field and, as it’s a derby, we’ll look forward to that.
“The other teams will also be competitive, especially the Glasgow Tigers who’ve played a long time in Scotland and have had some success.”
The Vikings, who under the Newcastle guise claimed the NFCII North Division championship and were Championship runners-up in 2016, will be aiming to not only better last seasons’ five wins, but maybe win some gold as well.
Coach Sholars added: “We know that there are no easy games but we can put ourselves in a position to win the championship but we have one goal in mid, to better last seasons’ win percentage.”
The progress of the Northumberland Vikings over the coming 2018 season can be followed either via their website www.northumberlandvikings.com; Facebook ‘Northumberland Vikings American Football;’ and Twitter ‘@vikings_afc.’
Sponsorship packages are available for the upcoming season with match day, and season packages on offer, prices range from £150 Game Sponsor through to a main, season sponsor package.
All enquiries are to be made to either Mick Tyler (07971 230360) or David Thomas (07722 245766) whilst all media requests are to be directed to the new Head of PR, Peter Mann, via email@example.com.