So we’re back with the review of week 9. We had 4 games played in the FAFL this weekend, but this is the Barbarian Blog after all, so let’s start with this :
Both the Leuven Lions and Brussels Bulls have nominated three of their players to the National Team Combine on June 22, which takes the number of teams who have made their choices to 4. Here’s a little timeline for the process of nominations and the Combine.
Don’t forget this date – Thursday, May 1 : Last day for teams to hand in their nominations (nominations made after this date WILL NOT be accepted)
Once all nominations are in (both from teams and from us) the players will be notified and only then will I post a list of all the players.
Now, the other piece of news was about our opponent for our second game. It seems pretty sure that we’ll be having a visit from the Hungarian National Team! We haven’t figured out where it will be played yet but I’m sure it will be worked out soon enough. So this means that in only a couple of months we’ve arranged two home games, versus The Netherlands and Hungary. Get excited, people!
Izegem Tribes 13, Limburg Shotguns 13
The Tribes had a glorious chance to win this game, but just couldn’t quite come up with it. Things started well enough, opening up a 13-0 lead thanks to a pair of rushing touchdowns by QB Pype, but the Shotguns defense held firm after this and allowed their offense to get back into it.
But it was a special teams play that gave the Shotguns life, a long kickoff return by WR Roundtree all the way to the Tribes 2 yard line, and it was soon after punched in by QB Smith on a sneak. The extra point was good and the Shotguns went into half time down 13-7.
Now in the final quarter, the Shotguns were able to find WR Moore on a long pass, and then again on a slant to tie the score at 13. The extra point was blocked by the Tribes which gave them one last shot with still 4 minutes remaining. They would move the ball downfield but had to attempt a fairly long field goal for the win which sailed wide right.
And as a wise man (as usual, when I use those words, I mean Coach Harve) once said : “Playing a tie is like kissing your sister”.
Ostend Pirates 36, Antwerp Diamonds 12
The Diamonds showed off their new and improved passing game against the Pirates, and it had a pretty good effect. It was just that the Pirates pass offense isn’t new, and they’ve been good at it for a long time.
WR Goncharov was back to doing what he does best – giving cornerbacks nightmares – by scoring three touchdowns, TE Brutyn caught another and QB Vermaut rounded off his day by scoring one touchdown on the ground as well.
QB Butler (playing under center for the first time since graduating high school all those years ago) has revived the Diamonds offense and they could have gotten right back in the game after a long pass but Antwerp fumbled the ball away. So they didn’t win the game but there was definitely improvement there which is good for the future.
For the Pirates, they won but at the cost of a few injuries to key players, let’s hope that everyone recovers just fine.
Brussels Bulls 17, Leuven Lions 5
It’s fair to say that this game had a pretty unusual scoreline, but it was a pretty unusual game, so I guess that that’s fine then.
The Lions really seemed to be all over the Bulls at the start of the game, but they just lacked a bit of composure and couldn’t take their opportunities when they presented themselves. A long punt by the Lions was fumbled by the Bulls and ended up it Lions’ hands, they had great field position but could only generate a field goal.
A long pass from QB Baete was caught by WR Sakyi-Gyinae but it only led to another punt, but the Lions defense held strong and after a snap sailed over QB Njufom’s head, it was easy for DE Salvaggio to wrap him up for a safety and the Lions went ahead 5-0, which was also the score at half time.
The Bulls offense had really gone nowhere in the first half (not even one first down at all), but the introduction of RB De Caluwe made a big difference, taking a handoff for 30 yards on his first touch and it lead to a TE #48 6-yard touchdown pass over the middle. RB De Caluwe himself ran it in for the two point conversion and the Bulls took the lead 8-5.
The Lions didn’t look as coherent in the second half, and the Bulls made a long drive with a nice catch from WR #83 from QB #8 and it lead to a RB De Caluwe touchdown, this time with an extra point and now the score was 15-5. Later on in the game a Lions punt was blocked through the end zone which counts as a safety as well, which took us to the final score of 17-5.
The Bulls outgained the Lions 179-107. For the Bulls, S Van de Wiele had 8.5 tackles, and LB #14 had 6.
On the Lions defense, S #86 had 5 tackles and 1 interception, and DE Salvaggio had 5.5 tackles and a safety.
Brussels Black Angels 27, Puurs Titans 8
The Titans were missing a few really good players through injury but the ones who did play held up pretty well, they just had a rotten time trying to cover WR Alloun, QB T Bouron finding him all alone on several occasions including the first touchdown. The second touchdown came in the second quarter on a tough run by QB T Bouron himself, and although the Titans defense weren’t that bad in the first half, their offense hadn’t achieved much and so they were down 13-0 at half time.
The second half was much of the same, the Titans holding back the flood but that was about the best they could manage, it took until the final quarter for the Angels to score again, WR #85 wide open in the back corner of the endzone. After a big punt return it was left to RB #44 to score from one yard away and it was looking like another shutout for the Angels at home.
But the Titans had one last chance, RB Kabongo with a 36 yard run and the next play 20 yards and a touchdown. QB Baeke found WR Van Reeth for the two point conversion which left the final score at 27-8.
The Black Angels outgained the Titans 180-101. For Brussels, DE Vrancken had 5 tackles, where 3 were for a loss and RB Banza had 67 yards on the ground and a 2 point conversion. For the Titans, LB Ghazal and S Steenbeke each had 5.5 tackles, and LB Lagae had 4 tackles, 2 were sacks.
Players of the week
Pirates WR Goncharov – 3 touchdown catches
Bulls RB De Caluwe – 12 rush, 55 yards, 1 td, 1 2xp. 3 tackles
Bulls S Van de Wiele – 8.5 tackles, 2 tfl, 0.5 sack
Black Angels QB T Bouron – 8/14, 102 yards, 2 td. 1 rushing td
Play of the week
Diamonds WR Wauters makes a diving, toe-dragging catch along the side of the endzone for a touchdown.
Quote of the week
“We aren’t allowed to say anything during the week, so we have to trash talk on Sundays”, injured Titans CB Raphael Baeten
C’Mon man of the week
It’s unbelieveable apparently how hard it is to get an ambulance to show up to the game on time. I know that these things have to be arranged months in advance, so is it too much to ask for these medics to actually arrive at the ground before the game is supposed to start? Ambulance crews, C’Mon man!
12pm, @ Archennes – Brussels Tigers (2-0) vs Waterloo Warriors (2-0)
Here’s an interesting one as we finally get to see what the Warriors are made of. It’ll be tough going for them as the Tigers are still the Tigers, but this is the opportunity that they’ve been waiting for. A Tigers win virtually assures them of the number 1 seed in the LFFAB.
Prediction : This should be a hard fought, tough game, but I still think the Tigers will have enough to win this one. Tigers 28 – Warriors 14
3pm @ Archennes – Grez-Doiceau Fighting Turtles (2-1) vs Wapi Phoenix (0-2)
The Phoenix are giving their young players a chance which is great, but it’s going to take a little while before they start to see good results, although each little baby step they can take is one in the right direction. It’s hard to imagine that they’ll be able get much done against the Fighting Turtles though, who are coming off a home loss against the Tigers. On another note, even if it’s warm weather, make sure to wear long pants!
Prediction : Well, this is probably going to be a whitewash, so let’s predict it as one : Fighting Turtles 50, Phoenix 0
So on Thursday we’ll roll with the usual rankings and mailbag. And seeing as it’s half way through the season, it’s time we go back and see just how clever (or dumb) I was with my predictions at the start of the season. Until then