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Archive for June, 2007

Argentina vs. USA Live Blog: Copa America 2007

Posted by Mike on June 28, 2007

Tonight, “Junior” Team USA will play Argentina in their first game of Copa America 2007. Argentina is the favorite to win the whole tournament, fielding some of the best players in the world (most notably wunderkind Lionel Messi). The Americans won the Gold Cup, including an impressive showing against Mexico. However, because they are an invitee, European clubs did not have to release their American players, and therefore we arrive without many of our best players. We bring a talented (if inexperienced) team to Venezuela, including Benny Feilhaber, but most fans are just hoping that we don’t get embarrassed tonight.

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8:47 pm: The American national anthem was cut short. Normally I wouldn’t think anything of it, but this is Venezuela. Hmmmm….

8:48 pm: Team USA is wearing some alternative uniform. I don;t think much of them now, but if we win this game, I will say that they look fantastic.

8:52 pm, 3rd minute: The game has begun. So far, neither team has made an aggressive move.

If you did not know this already, expect a lot of flopping from Argentina.

8:54 pm, 5th minute: Argentina makes the first move, as Messi makes a break into the box. Jimmy Conrad is able to prevent a score.

8:55 pm, 6th minute: USA’s first offensive move is (correctly) called offside.

8:56 pm, 7th minute: Eddie Johnson breaks away from the defense, before being tripped up. The referee awards us a penalty kick versus goalie/old man Abbondanzieri.

8:58 pm, 9th minute: GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLL!!! Eddie Johnson gets the penalty kick, and he gets it past the keeper on the right side of the net.

Unbelievably, USA is leading 1-0! WHOOOOO!!!

8:59 pm, 10th minute: Early, it’s looking like Riquelme is the man in midfield that the Argentinans are relying on for direction.

9:00 pm, 11th minute: GOOOLLL! Well, that joy of a lead lasted about two minutes. A good free kick by Argentina and a huge defensive oversight by the Americans lead to a two man breakaway against Kasey Keller. he didn’t stand a chance; Hernan Crespo scores easily. The game is tied at 1-1, and I am once again nervous about how quickly this game could take a turn for the worse.

9:04 pm: After the first few minutes, Argentina’s passing has gotten much better. Riquelme remains the driving force of their attack.

9:06 pm, 17th minute: USA knocks on the door from the left side, but a bad cross removes any threat for the South Americans.

9:07 pm, 18th minute: Feilhaber has been getting the most touches in our midfield so far.

9:08 pm, 20th minute: Jimmy Conrad has been doing a fairly good job defending Messi so far. I expected him to get run into the ground; that may still happen.

9:10 pm, 21st minute: I am concerned that we haven’t gotten any good opportunities on offense aside from the breakaway that led to the penalty kick.

9:12 pm, 23rd minute: After two corner kicks, Riquelme is left a lot of space on the left side, but ends up kicking a cross that goes well out of bounds, ending any threat and wasting a good opportunity.

9:14 pm, 25th minute: Bornstein passes to no one in particular, killing any momentum from making Messi turn the ball over 45 seconds before. What the heel kind of pass was that, John?

9:18 pm, 29th minute: Argentina is trying to do some fancy passing near the opposing goal. Aside from the free kick, the US defenders have yet to be fooled.

9:20 pm, 31st minute: Javier Mascherano is called for a foul on Taylor Twellman. Feilhaber or Mapp will free kick.

9:22 pm, 33nd minute: Feilhaber hooks the kick way too far to the left, and Argentina gets a goal kick.

The crowd has been loud (and certainly pro-Argentina), but on TV it doesn’t appear as intimidating as I thought it would be.

9:25 pm, 36th minute: The good news: so far in the game, Argentina has only had one shot on goal, which is less than team USA’s two and a sign that our defense is holding up. The bad news: that one shot was an easy goal off of a huge defensive lapse. What happens in the remainder of this game is when (or if) our defense makes another big mistake.

9:30 pm, 41st minute: We’re almost at halftime, and this game is still very much within our reach. To be honest, I did not expect this at all.

9:32 pm: 43rd minute: It must be karma; just after I type that, Veron hits a great strike, and only the post and the out stretched hands of Kasey Keller stop a goal. Off the corner kick, Keller must make another great save to keep Argentina from taking the lead.

9:35 pm, 45th minute: Benny Feilhaber gets a good shot from outside the zone. Abbondanzieri is there to makes the solid stops, and the first half ends.

At halftime, the game is tied at 1-1. I did not expect team USA to be this competitive against Argentina; it makes me wonder how we would have fared playing our best team. Not only have we played well against one of the best teams in the world, but we have a chance to tie or win in the second half. In order for us to get a good result, our defense must continue to nip Argentina’s offensive chances in the bud. Most importantly, we cannot beat ourselves. I cannot help but wonder that, at some point, we will make a mental mistake that could cost us the game. Argentina will take advantage of any opportunity that we might give them.

9:52 pm: The second half begins. Argentina has the ball.

9:55 pm, 48th minute: USA is still doing a good job of stopping any good scoring chances for Lionel Messi.

9:57 pm, 50th minute: Messi seems to be a little frustrated right now. Still, I don;t know how long our defense will be able to keep this up before they run out gas and the floodgates open.

10:00 pm, 53rd minute: Twellman draws another free kick very close to the Argentinan goal. I

10:01 pm, 54th minute: Justin Mapp’s free kick is strong, but too high. Argentina gets a goal kick.

I never thought we would be getting good offensive chances against one of the best teams in the world with MLS players.

10:05 pm, 58th minute: Our first sub, and it’s Argentina. Aimar comes in for Cambiasso.

10:06 pm, 59th minute: Gabriel Milito gets a yellow card for Argentina, the first of the game. USA’s ensuing free kick doesn’t threaten the goal.

10:08 pm, 61st minute: Messi is finally staring to get good opportunities. Luckily, his shot went just wide of the goal, but the Americans make their first substitution. Eddie Gaven replaces Ben Olsen in midfield.

10:11 pm, 64th minute: NOOOOOO!!! The American defense finally breaks. Messi sets up another scoring chance, this time making a great pass to Crespo, who scores from the right side, his second goal of the night. Argentina lead, 2-1.

10:14 pm, 67th minute: Saw the replay of the goal. We still had a chance to make the save, but Crespo completely faked out our goalie. The defense was unable to offer any help; it looks like they’ve lost a step or two from the beginning of the game. They need to make a substitution on defense.

10:16 pm, 69th minute: Instead, they make an offensive sub, replacing Twellman with Hercules Gomez.

10:18 pm, 72nd minute: It’s pretty much been all Argentina in the second half. They’re holding the ball a larger percentage of the time, they’re getting more scoring chances, their chances, are much better than anything that the Americans have been getting.

10:22 pm, 75th minute: Off the free kick, Argentina comes very close to putting this game away. Keller is there to make the grab before an attempted header.

10:25 pm, 78th minute: Aimar puts the game away off a great cross from the left side. Argentina now leads, 3-1, with less than 15 minutes to play.

Well, the thought pulling this one out was fun while it lasted, but We ran out of gas or Argentina figured out how to thread through our defense. Either way, they are clearly the better team, as much of an effort as we put into this game.

10:30 pm, 83rd minute: It’s worth noting that we haven;t had a real scoring opportunity since about the 60th minute, when a yellow card drew a free kick.

10:32 pm, 85th minute: Tevez was offside, but it doesn’t affect the ultimate outcome. The American defense falters again, and the fresher Argentinan team scores again. 4-1, Argentina.

I wasn’t expecting to win this game, but I hoped that we would keep it close. Most American sports fans are watching the NBA Draft; they’re just going to see the final score and think “We got clobbered”. Our defense played very well in the first half, and through the first 60 minutes the result was very much in doubt. However, the same problem that befell us in the World Cup is impacting us now: we are getting few if any, opportunities to score. When you can’t score, you can’t win. Eventually, our defense ran out of gas, and the Argentinan offense took full advantage.

10:39 pm, 90+ minutes: As the game is about to end, you can see it the American players’ eyes: They had absolutely nothing left in the tank.

10:41 pm: The game comes to an end, as Argentina wins 4-1. The score doesn’t tell the whole story. Our team played very well in the first half, but they couldn’t keep up with a superior Argentinan side in the second half. As we got tired, our weaknesses became more apparent, and Messi, Crespo, Aimar and Tevez exploited them to the fullest. For 60 minutes we did just enough to keep it close, but we failed to produce any offense, and Argentina dominated for the final 30.

It stinks to see us lose this way. Thankfully, our next two opponents should not be as daunting.

 

 

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Posted in Copa America, Futbol, Live Blog, Patriotism at its finest, soccer, Things that are more fun in foreign dialects, USA! USA!, Way More Tags Than This Post Merits, yes this is a slow news day. how can you tell? | 4 Comments »

Huevonazo Of The Week: Jason Miller

Posted by Mike on June 25, 2007

Where would the Huevonazo Of The Week feature be without martial arts? This week, we go to Jason Miller, a mixed Martial Arts fighter, who delivers a front kick just a little too late.

Do you know how bad this kick was? Even Miller was laughing at his opponent, as Hiramitsu writhed in pain. His face was priceless, a look of “Oh, I so want to feel bad for you dude, but man, that was soooooo funny.” I guarantee you that he got knocked out by that guy 15 seconds later as punishment for that laughter.

Posted in AHHHHH!!! MY EYES!, Great Moments in Stupidity, HUEVONAZO!, Kung Fu, Martial Arts, nutshots, When you least expect it...EXPECT IT!, yes this is a slow news day. how can you tell?, Your hubris is burning from the nosebleed section | 3 Comments »

Video: Benny Feilhaber’s Goal, Gold Cup Final

Posted by Mike on June 24, 2007

Team USA’s Benny Feilhaber scored an absolutely ridiculous goal off a deflected corner kick in the 73rd minute. It ultimately proved to ge the game winner, as the USA won 2-1 and the Gold Cup title over rival Mexico.

After the game, I eagerly awaited the YouTubeage. This is the Univision version, complete with the insane call by Pablo Ramirez. How can you not get pumped up after seeing this?

UPDATE: This video is shorter, only showing the GOLAZO!

Posted in CONCACAF Gold Cup, Futbol, GOOOOOOOLLLLLL!!!, Mexico, soccer, USA! USA! | 48 Comments »

USA vs. Mexico Live Blog: CONCACAF Gold Cup Final

Posted by Mike on June 24, 2007

UPDATE: We have video of Feilhaber’s fantastic goal.

Today, USA plays Mexico in the CONCACAF Gold Cup Final at Soldier Field in Chicago. At stake is a spot in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. This is the biggest game that team USA will play in a while, since they have decided to send their JV team to get slaughtered in Copa America. Neither team has been particularly impressive in their play, and Canada probably thinks they should be here instead of the US. Still, this is by far the best soccer rivalry in North America.

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I’ll be watching the game on Univision, and I suggest you do the same. It’s a lot more fun that way, even if you don’t speak any Spanish.

3:08 pm, 2nd minute: The game begins in a packed Soldier field. Mexico is the aggressor early, getting a few opportunites in the first three minutes.

Considering the game is being played in America, this is a decidedly pro-Mexican crowd.

3:10 pm, 5th minute: We need to do something to fix our right side defense. Castillo, the left winger of el Tri, is running us ragged.

3:13 pm, 8th minute: I don’t know if it’s the Mexico defense our our forwards, but it looks like the Americans aren’t even trying to attack.

3:14 pm, 9th minute: Carlos Bocanegra gets a yellow card. The call is justified; he went for a lot more than the ball on that tackle.

3:16 pm, 10th minute: Jared Borgetti is hurting right now, and it looks like it was Bocanegra again. He’s lucky there wasn’t a call.

The US needs to materialize some good offensive opportunities to counter the chances that Mexico is getting.

3:18 pm: 13th minute: Only in international soccer can a coach dress in a pink polo shirt under a black blazer and look manly. Hugo Sanchez, you’ve got some serious huevos.

3:20 pm: Mexico gets another scoring chance from the left side. The American defense seems to still be lapsing a bit. We’re lucky the crosses from that side haven’t had any sort of accuracy.

3:22 pm, 17th minute: Our first real scoring chance! Some good passing, and Damarcus Beasley and Brian Ching converge to the ball in the zone, but Oswaldo Sanchez is there to block the ball, and the defense clears.

3:26 pm, 21st minute: The Mexicans have done a lot of flopping in this game. So far, the referee hasn’t been fooled.

3:28 pm, 23rd minute: Good lord! Hugo Sanchez looks like a villain from “Miami Vice” in that outfit.

TIRO DE ESQUINA PARA MEXICO…SI!

3:30 pm: Mexico gets two straight corner kicks, but both times the ball goes over Tim Howard’s head and out of play.

3:31 pm: Johnathan Borstein firs a bullet at the goal from just outside the box, but he just misses to the left. Six inches up and to the right, and USA would be up 1-0. A great strike, but just wide.

3:35 pm, 30th minute: Mexico finally gets the phantom foul call and free kick they’re looking for, thanks to an almost-tackle by Pablo Mastroeni.

The free kick deflects of the American wall and out of harms way, but El Tri gets a free kick.

3:37 pm, 32nd minute: After the corner kick, Mexico gets another opportunity by luring Howard away from the net, but they’re called for a foul.

3:38 pm, 33rd minute: Jaime Lozano should get an Oscar for drawing that yellow card.

3:40 pm, 35th minute: This is fun. The Univision announcers are using Brian Ching’s name as a sound effect. Every time he gets bumped by a defender, CHING! I can’t stop laughing.

3:43 pm, 37th minute: Either Jared Borgetti is the greatest telenovela actor we’ve ever seen, or his hamstring just exploded. Since this is soccer, I’m going to guess the former. He wasn’t even touched!

3:45 pm, 39th minute: Another scoring opportunity for the Americans, sparked by an intercepted pass by Landon Donovan. A great strike by Clint Dempsey, but Oswaldo “dirty Sanchez” makes the save.

3:46 pm, 40th minute: Nery Castillo exploits the left side yet again, and gets a one-on-one opportunity against the keeper, but misses his shot three inches to the right. SE LAAAA PERRR DIOOOOOOOO!!! I love Univision.

3:49 pm, 43rd minute: USA gets a decent chance, but bad passing prevents any real threat.

3:50 pm, 44th minute: NOOOOOOOOO!!! Another defensive lapse and some great passing leaves Andres Guardado wide open in front of the goal, and he scores easily. 1-0, Mexico, near the end of the half. DAMMIT!

Watching the replay, it’s Nery Castillo who’s continuing to exploit the American defense.

3:53 pm: the first half ends, with Mexico leading 1-0. We did not play well at all. Our defense was lax, to put it mildly, we weren’t attacking enough to get good scoring opportunities, and We have absolutely no answer for Nery Castillo right now.

4:09 pm: The second half is about begin. Ricardo Clark has substituted Pablo Mastroeni. Let’s hope that helps the Americans play better.

4:12 pm, 47th minute: A great opportunity for the US to tie the game, as Ricardo Clark makes his presence felt immediately, but three times they take a shot, including Clint Dempsey twice, and Oswaldo denies them all three times. Great play by the goalie, but we have to be able to finish off those chances.

Univision is decidedly pro-Mexico in their coverage; don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. But hey, it beats Eric Wynalda.

4:15 pm, 51st minute: Our defense lapses AGAIN! and Omar Bravo gets a good shot and forces a corner kick. The Americans fail to clear the corner kick, and Nery Castillo nearly scores on a bullet strike to put el Tri up by two goals.

4:18 pm: 54th minute: The Americans are getting more opportunities to to score in this half. Dempsey is left wide open just outside the box on the left side, but he makes what may be the lamest kick ever. Sanchez has no trouble picking the ball up and clearing the zone. A great pass by Donovan, wasted.

4:20 pm: 56th minute: Coach Update: Hugo Sanchez has taken his blazer off, and now he just looks like a bad golfer on the sidelines.

Another opportunity for the Americans to score. CHING! It’s clear that Ricardo Clark has changed the dynamic of the American attack, and the game is much faster and more exciting now.

4:22 pm, 58th minute: I know that you Mexicans are flopping to try and get calls, but I thought you were above that, Rafa Marquez. For crying out loud, you play for Barca!

4:24 pm, 60th minute: Just as I am about to rant about out defense, Brian Ching draws a penalty kick for the USA, with a chance to tie. Donovan will kick.

4:26 pm, 62nd minute: GOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLL!!!! Donovan completely fakes out Dirty Sanchez, and scores easily on the right side. We are now tied, 1-1. WHOOOOO!!!

4:31 pm, 67th minute: Mexico has gotten several scoring chances after the goal by Donovan. The latest was a free kick from the right side, but the header doesn;t deflect the ball enough to challenge Tim Howard.

4:32 pm, 68th minute: We still have a serious problem with Nery Castillo.

Taylor Twellman is coming in for the USA, replacing Clint Dempsey. Replacing a midfielder with a striker is a clear offensive move, even though Dempsey is an attacking midfielder.

4:34 pm, 70th minute: There’s been a bad collision at around midfield. Johnathan Spector and Andres Guardado hit each other’s heads in mid air. Let’s hope that they’re both okay.

4:37 pm, 73rd minute: GOOOLLLAAAAAAAZOOOOOOO!!!!! GOLLAAAAAAAZOOOOOOO!!! GOLAZZZZZOOOOO!!! off the corner kick, the ball is deflected to just outside a box, and then Benny Feilhaber deliver an absolute death strike from 20 yards away. An absolutely unbelievable goal by Feilhaber, and USA takes a 2-1 lead. Even the Univision announcers are going nuts. USA! USA! USA!

4:40 pm, 76th minute: USA very nearly scores again, as Brian Ching beats the defense and Oswaldo, but hits shot hits the right post. I love how the Americans have been playing in the second half. My only question is, where the hell was this in the World Cup?!?

4:43 pm, 79th minute: Mexico has put Cuauhtemoc Blanco in the game, hoping for some offense.

4:44 pm, 80th minute: As the USA continues to act as the aggressor in the second half, I can;t help but wonder if Mexico ran out of gas at some point.

4:46 pm, 82nd minute: At this point the live blogs may be falling apart. I am now yelling taunts to the Mexican ream at the TV. I want to start hearing “NO SE PUEDEN! NO SE PUEDEN!” from the American fans in Soldier Field.

4:48 pm, 84th minute: If you can’t find any sporting event to watch tomorrow night, there’s the grand finale of La Fea Mas Bella. Solo por Univision!

4:51 pm, 87th minute: In all the excitement I forgot to tell you that before the go-ahead goal, Frank Simek was put in the game for team USA.

4:52 pm, 89th minute: Howard makes a great save on a point blank shot by Mexico to save the game. He’s done an excellent job today.

4:54 pm, 90th minute: No! The Americans have a two man breakaway, and Damarcus Beasley is all alone in front of an open goal…and he kicks it too high, against the cross bar.

The game is getting 4 minutes of stoppage time, which is going to be a very, very long four minutes.

4:57 pm, 93rd minute: Oguchi Onyewu decleats Omar Bravo in the box, but no foul is called. I agree with the call because Onyewu was looking for the ball. Still, he was lucky no call was made.

The final minute, and I’m really nervous.

4:59 pm: It’s over It’s over! USA has won, 2-1, and the Americans are the Champions of CONCACAF! WHOOOOO!!!! Take that, Hugo Sanchez and your pink shirt!

We certainly saved our best play for last. The second half was some of the best soccer I’ve seen from this team, and certainly the most aggressive I’ve ever seen them. I think putting Clark in for Mastroeni really changed the dynamic of the game, and Feilbaher’s death strike to win the game will now become the stuff of legends to the literally hundreds of soccer fans in this country. In all seriousness, if we play like that in every game, team USA could be able to compete against almost any…

Wow. There are few things more awkward than seeing Landon Donovan trying to talk in Spanish about the game for Republica Deportiva. This is the kind of stuff you just can’t get with English coverage. Once again, congratulations to the US National Team for a great game and well-deserved victory over Mexico.

Posted in CONCACAF Gold Cup, Mexico, soccer, Things that are more fun in foreign dialects, USA! USA! | 5 Comments »

Previewing the College World Series Final

Posted by Mike on June 23, 2007

North Carolina-Oregon State II is about to begin tonight, so there is some info you should know before you watch:

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Game 1: Tonight, 7 pm.

Starters: Alex White (UNC) vs. Jorge Reyes (OSU)
Game 2: Sunday, 7 pm.

Starters: Luke Putkonen (UNC) vs. Mike Stutes (OSU)

Game 3 (if necessary): Monday, 7 pm.

Possible starters: Robert Woodard (UNC) vs. Daniel Turpen (OSU)

Key relief pitchers:

  • Oregon State: Eddie Kunz (closer), Anton Maxwell, Mark Grbavac.
  • North Carolina: Andrew Carignan (closer), Rob Wooten, Matt Danford.

Key position players:

  • Oregon State: Mitch Canham, C (.321 Batting average, 10 HR, 57 RBI, .993 fielding percentage); Mike Lissman, LF (.325 BA, 10 HR, 61 RBI, 1.000 fielding); Jordan Lennerton, 1B (.313 BA, 8 HR, 48 BRI, .995 fielding).
  • North Carolina: Dustin Ackley, 1B (.403 BA, 9 HR, 72 RBI, .989 fielding); Josh Horton, SS (.335 BA, 9 HR, 53 RBI, .939 fielding); Tim Federowicz, C (.339 BA, 4 HR, 64 RBI, .997 fielding); Reid Fronk, LF (.319 BA, 11 HR, 56 RBI, .993 fielding).

What UNC must do to win:

  • Good starting pitching. Our starting staff has spent most of the postseason being knocked around by opposing offenses; in 11 postseason games, only four times has the Heels’ starting pitcher lasted longer than five innings (the opener against Jacksonville, and their three elimination games heading into the final series). Fortunately, most of the time the bullpen has been able to pitch well enough in relief for the offense to pull off a momentous comeback, as 5 of our 11 victories have come after a deficit of 2 runs or more. In particular, Alex White has had a rough first postseason. He needs to have a decent start against Oregon State tonight if the Heels want to win.
  • The bullpen must continue to play shutout baseball. Wooten and Carignan have almost always been able to stop any offensive momentum from their opponents this season. How much luck the Tar Heels have in the finals will depend just as much on the bullpen as on the starters, if not more so.
  • Wake up the bats. North Carolina has been shockingly devoid of offensive power in the postseason. Then on Thursday against Rice, the Heels hit four home runs. The UNC offense is led by National Freshman of the Year Dustin Ackley, and they cannot afford him to slump like he had for the first 9 games of the playoffs.

All of the live blogs will be on Tar Heel Mania. Enjoy the series.

Posted in ACC, AHHHHH!!! MY EYES!, Baseball, College World Series, Digital Headbutt, Live Blog, NCAA, North Carolina, Oregon State, Pac 10, Tar Heel Mania, Tar Heels, Way More Tags Than This Post Merits | 1 Comment »

Cologne Tar Heels (er, Centurions) Report: NFL Europa Week 10

Posted by Mike on June 22, 2007

(There are only two players from the University of North Carolina currently in NFL Europa: Bobby Blizzard and Cedrick Holt. They both play for the Cologne Centurions. Being the unabashed Tar Heel that I am, the Centurions thus command my attention.)

The Cologne Tar Heels Centurions came into the final week of the NFL Europa regular season with a chance to make their first trip to the World Bowl. However, they would first have to overcome perhaps their toughest challenge of the season: going on the road to play the NFLE powerhouse Frankfurt Galaxy. It turned out to be too difficult a challenge, as they lost 31-14 and were eliminated from World Bowl XV contention.

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The offense seemed to play well from a basic statistical perspective. Once again the NFLE’s premier rushing attack was effective, gaining 126 yards on the ground as Derrick Ross had another 100 yard game. Erik Meyer didn’t have a bad game either, completing 25 of his 33 passes for 208 yards and a touchdown. However, nearly all of those stats were amassed in the second half, after Frankfurt had already gained a 24-0 lead. In the first half, the Frankfurt defense dominated, allowing no points. In five possession, Cologne punted four times, including 3 three-and-out possessions, and one missed 40 yard field goal. UNC alum Bobby Blizzard only had 35 receiving yards, but scored Cologne’s only passing touchdown.

Cologne’s offense sputtered in the first half; however, it was the collapse of the Centurions’ top-ranked defense that doomed them. Frankfurt had a field day on offense, led by quarterbacks J.T. O’Sullivan and Kevin Eakin. They combined for 286 yards, 3 touchdowns, no interceptions and a combined QB rating of 142.9. The Galaxy never had to punt, and they had a chance to score on every possession (except when they took a knee to end the first half). In total, Frankfurt amassed 379 yards of offense, 297 of which were during the Galaxy’s 24 unanswered points to start the game.

The Cologne Centurions finish 6-4 on the season, just short of a World Bowl Berth. However, the team did sweep the NFLE player of the year awards in 2007. Running back Derrick Ross was named Co-offensive POY (along with Frankfurt’s J.T. O’Sullivan), and defensive end Jason Hall was named defensive POY.

World Bowl XV

With this win, the Frankfurt Galaxy will play in World Bowl XV on Saturday. Their opponent will be the Hamburg Sea Devils, who earned a berth with a season-ending win over the Rhein Fire. This year’s World Bowl should be very exciting. With Frankfurt and NFLE’s best fanbase hosting the game, the World Bowl is expecting a sellout crowd, which would be the largest crowd to see an American Football game in continental Europe since World Bowl X in 2002.

Attendance numbers are up this season. For the first time in NFL Europe history, average attendance for the season will exceed 20,000 per game. To put that in perspective, that gives the NFLE the world’s tenth largest per game attendance for a domestic league, ahead of the Italian Serie A and just behind French Ligue 1. Frankfurt’s average home attendance was 33, 043, which is approximately the average attendance at an English Premier League game.

Unfortunately, you probably aren’t going to be able to watch World Bowl XV, as it will only be broadcast on the NFL Network in America, and very few Americans have NFLN. While this the the last meaningful football game until September, at least you’ll be spared the pregame entertainment.

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Posted in Colonge Centurions, Digital Headbutt, football, NFL Europa, North Carolina, Tar Heels, yes this is a slow news day. how can you tell? | Leave a Comment »