The GFL was back to a packed programme this week with 7 games being played across the country. As usual, there were some surprises this week as some of the minnows started to punch above their weight in their fight for survival.
The main event this week was the top of the table clash between Kiel Baltic Hurricanes and Berlin Adler, featuring the UK's own Dave Lawrey. As with the previous meeting, it was the Hurricanes who came out on top thanks to another powerful offensive performance. The Alder stayed with the home team well into the third quarter, trailing by only one point. Three fourth-quarter touchdowns by running back Trevar Deed sealed the game for the Canes, however, with a final score of 41-27. Deed's impressive 260 yard performance was rewarded with a total of five touchdowns.
The Capital's other team was also in action this week, as the Rebels continued their march up the standings at the Hamburg Blue Devils. After an opening kick-off was returned for a touchdown by the Rebels' Samuel Shannon, the visitors dominated the game. Touchdown passes the quarterback tandem of Darius Outlaw and Brian Amaral ensured a 33-7 victory for Berlin. Hamburg continue to languish in last place in the North.
The final northern teams in action this week produced a fantastic battle that ended in a 29-29 tie. For Luebeck, the point separates them from Hamburg and gives further hope from survival. The Panther, however, will see this as an opportunity missed to cement their playoff place. Luebeck's impressive 354 rushing yards were rewarded with two trips into the endzone. Despite holding a fourth quarter lead, the Cougars could not hold on, conceding a touchdown in the final minute and failing to stop the two point conversion. Luebeck will still require another win in order to survive this season. Their game with Hamburg remains crucial.
The biggest shock of the week came at the bottom end of the GFL South. The only winless team in the league finally picked up a victory as Munich overcame the Saarland Hurricanes by a score of 35-7. Behind strong running from Fabien Gaertner, who gained 234 yards and a pair of touchdowns, the Cowboys sent a strong message to Wiesbaden after their win last week. Defensively, Munich were very strong, with Schultz grabbing 3 interceptions and returning them for a total of 97 yards.
Wiesbaden, meanwhile, were on the end of a hammering from Jake Spitzlberger and the Schwabisch Hall Unicorns. The Quarterback threw four touchdowns and ran four more to secure a 55-20 home win. The Unicorns totalled 586 offensive yards and continue to lead the GFL south. The Phantoms will take heart from the fact that they were able to move the ball, but with Munich now hot on their heels, they will need to find some more wins soon. This weekend’s game against Saarland is a great opportunity.
In Mannheim, there was a game to be remembered for the total absence of defence on either team. Rhein-Neckar's 62-60 win over Franken took over three hours to complete as the opposing quarterbacks took turns to toss touchdown passes. Marco Ehrenfired came out victorious on this occasion, throwing a total of seven scores, compared to Cedric Townsend's five. Franken's penchant for close games this year must have left fans tearing their hair out. The Bandits now look like genuine contenders, and their game against Schwabisch Hall in September promises to be a thriller.
The final game this week was a modest 13-9 victory for the Stuttgart Scorpions over Marburg. The Scorpions, with their American quarterback Thomas Schneider returning, will be pleased to get a win with Thomas Metzger after last week’s disappointing loss. The Mercenaries continue to cling on to fourth place but it is by no means clear who will be in the final playoff spot in September.