There’s plenty to get through today as we’ve got semi finals to review and the All-FFL team to name. Let’s go to work.
Brussels Tigers 34, West Flanders Tribes 7
It would be fair to say that the Tigers were far the better team on the field but I think the score was inflated a bit by a couple of garbage time touchdowns. Still, even without those 12 points, it was a resounding, comfortable victory.
Early in the second quarter the Tigers opened the scoring and made a two point conversion, their next drive ended on the 1 yard line after an interception by CB Pype but the Tribes next play ended in a safety for the Tigers who went up 10-0.
After half time, the Tribes were able to get the ball moving and it was the QB Vermaut to WR Laleman connection who provided the only score of the day for the Tribes, 10-7.
For the rest of the game, the Tribes had bad field position, due to a ridiculous 83 yard punt (say what?) and the mounting Tribes turnovers. The Tigers were able to take advantage of those short fields by pounding in 3 more touchdowns, and sending them to the Belgian Bowl as red-hot favourites.
Antwerp Diamonds 12, Brussels Bulls 9
The Diamonds did start the game sharply but had just two missed field goals to show for their early work, and after a fumble by RB Vervaet, the Bulls had a short field and took the lead on a rush up the middle by QB Torrini. The extra point was converted by K Stalmans and the Bulls lead 7-0, which would also be the half time score.
Antwerp needed to come out strong after the break and they did, QB Borra rushing one in on their opening drive. QB Jolie came in for the two point conversion but TE Verhelst let the ball slip out of his grasp, leaving the Diamonds down 7-6.
The Bulls were unable to move the ball on their next drive and were forced to punt, but it was blocked by De Gryze which left the Diamonds in the red zone. It was RB Wauters who scored the six pointer, but Antwerp’s problems with conversions continued as QB Borra threw an interception to a Bull who returned it all the way to the house, leaving the score precarious at 12-9.
Again, the Diamonds defense held strong, league leading rusher Bulls RB Acheson wasn’t given any room at all. The Bulls did have a couple of chances during the game on long passes but one was overthrown and another was dropped, both would have been sure touchdowns.
The Bulls had one final chance but they ran out of downs, stranded at Antwerp’s 10 yard line, leaving the Diamonds to take a knee and begin their celebrations. It will be Antwerp’s first Belgian Bowl since 2005.
The BFL Fair Play award
I bet you’ve never heard of this before! I hadn’t either until I was told about it by BFL President Lesley Moreels. The BAFOC (the officials) have made a list based on the number of personal fouls and unsportsmanlike conduct penalties per game, and here it is.
1 – Liege Monarchs – 0.86
2 – Antwerp Diamonds – 0.86*
3 – Leuven Lions – 1.00
4 – Gent Gators – 1.14
5 – Luxembourg Steelers – 1.29
6 – Puurs Titans, WAPI Phoenix – 1.57
8 – Andenne Bears – 1.63
9 – West Flanders Tribes – 1.71
10 – Brussels Black Angels, Brussels Bulls – 1.86
12 – Brussels Tigers – 2.25
13 – LLN Fighting Turtles – 2.71
14 – Charleroi Cougars – 3.00
* note : Liege are ranked ahead of Antwerp because the Diamonds had a player ejected and the Monarchs did not.
There were just 7 players ejected this season which is an improvement on last year. Congratulations to the Monarchs who show that you can play winning football without being dirty.
The All-FFL team
It’s finally time to announce the team! It takes a lot of work but I feel pretty confident that if this team would actually take the field that the results would be spectacular.
Just one other note – this team is based only on the FFL regular season.
QB : Benedict Vermaut (WF)
RB : Ben Acheson (BB)
HB : Rashidi Banza (BBA)
WR : Bas Laleman (WF), Dorian Vermeir (PUU)
TE : Andy Brutyn (WF)
T : Jeroen Vanhauwere (WF), Lionel Sapart (BB)
G : Olivier Beck (BB), Bret Buggenhout (ANT)
C : Bjorn Van Den Bremt (BBA)
DE : Casimir Sumen (BB), Tom Van Put (PUU)
DT : Bart Meys (BBA)
ILB : Benjamin Dosunmu (BBA), Roland Fiquet (BBA)
OLB : Ken Meersmans (PUU), Wim Vanmarcke (WF)
CB : Nicolas Wart (BBA), Sam Vanbrabant (LEU)
S : Kim Jolie (GNT), Joshua Vanderaa (ANT)
Long snapper : Yorick Piqueur (GNT)
Kicker : Ken Philippe (GNT)
Punter : Brecht Pauwels (LIM)
Kickoff : Kirsten Stalmans (BB)
QB : Samuel Torrini (BB), Bart Killens (GNT), Bram Baete (LEU)
WR : Thomas Bouron (BBA)
TE : Joris Verhelst (ANT)
G : Tim Vandenabeele (WF)
C : Denis Lyck (BB)
DE / OLB : Didier Timmermans (GNT)
DT : Aristo Mestdagh (WF)
LB : Tarik Abarkan (BB), Olivier Van Moorleghem (PUU)
CB : Nils De Groef (ANT)
S : Quentin Mees (BB), Owusu Sakyi-Gyinae (LEU)
LB/QB : Sergio Borra (ANT)
LB/HB : Mathias Lagae (PUU)
Head coaches : Curtis Plybon (BB), Romuald Derys (BBA)
Assistants : John Jolie (ANT), Benedict Verheyen (WF)
As always, there were a few really difficult decisions, some people were left out who really could have made it, but I can’t pick everyone!
A few notes – You may notice that I didn’t pick a return man. But seeing as Dorian Vermeir, Kim Jolie, Joris Verhelst and Thomas Bouron were in the team anyway, I didn’t see the need to take a specialist.
– I chose to start Bart Meys on defense but he could have started at Offensive Tackle too.
– I know I took a lot of quarterbacks. Our starter plays a killer safety and I saw Bram Baete playing defense this year too so they can also do multiple things.
– Of the specialists, Yorick Piqueur can play offensive line and Kirsten Stalmans can play receiver.
It’s a pity that there aren’t any representative teams at the moment, but yeah, we’ve had this discussion before.
Congratulations to the 42 for making the team, and congratulations to everyone whose team-mate made the team. They only made it because you made them look good!
That’s all there is for this week. Next week will be the Belgian Bowl preview : Antwerp Diamonds v Brussels Tigers.. who would have thunk it? Until next time