Finland prepares for IFAF Women’s World Championships in Canada

The Finnish national team is beginning to take shape for the IFAF Women’s World Championship.

Finland’s women’s national team is deep in preparation for women’s full contact American football’s premier event.

In March, the Finnish American football f]Federation (SAJL) hosted a camp to begin the selection of the team. The camp drew nearly 90 players and head coach Mika Eloranta was pleased with what he saw in the women.

In August of 2015, the Finnish women’s team won the Women’s European Championship topping Great Britain 50-12 in Granada, Spain. The Finns are surely among the favorites going into this summer’s IFAF Women’s World Championship.

“The level of the Finnish women is good and there is plenty of material to choose from the players to the next camp,” Eloranta comments. “Although the European Championship team players is a strong side, new players have emerged.”

The next selection camp will be held May 13-14. Eloranta estimates the final cuts will be difficult. Sixty-two atheletes are vying for 45 rosters spots on Team Finland.

The IFAF Women’s World Championship will be played from June 22 to July 1, in Langley, Canada. Finland is the reigning European champion and has won the bronze medal at the last two World Championships.

The summer’s World Championshps include the reigning champion Canada, the United States, Australia, Mexico, and the United Kingdom.

Finnish women’s national team’s World Cup preparation schedule:

May 13-14, 2017: Round II qualification

June 17-21, 2017:  to 45 preparatory camp

June 22 to July 1: IFAF Women’s World Championships in Langley, Canada

Finland Qualifying players to the camp:

Quarterbacks:

Hakkarainen Jonna Helsinki Wolverines
Kosonen Pia Hyvinkää Falcons
Pelkonen Jenni Hämeenlinna Huskies

Running backs:

Kilpeläinen Jenni Helsinki Wolverines
Kuusinen Tytti Seinajoki Crocodiles
Linden Jenni Helsinki Roosters
Pulkkinen Laura Kuopio Steelers
Rasilahti Anne Helsinki Roosters
Suninen Satu Kouvola Indians
Turpeinen Maija Helsinki Roosters

Receivers:

Järn Emmi Helsinki Wolverines
Kuosmanen Sari Helsinki Roosters
Maunula Jessi Hämeenlinna Huskies
Nirhamo Kirsti Helsinki Wolverines
Olavuo Nana Helsinki Roosters
Seiles Janna-Jemima Helsinki Roosters
Seppälä Sanni Helsinki Wolverines
Välimäki Janica Helsinki Roosters

Offensive line:

Hurme Minttu Helsinki Wolverines
Hästbacka Sara Oulu Northern Lights
Kamula Kaija Oulu Northern Lights
Koskenniemi Riikka Helsinki Roosters
Kumpulainen Noora Jyväskylä Jaguars
Lehtonen Sara Seinajoki Crocodiles
Leppäaho Eeva Seinajoki Crocodiles
Mäntyniemi Suvi Turku Trojans
Peltonen Annukka Helsinki Roosters
Saarenpää Anna-Kaisa Helsinki Wolverines
Stjernberg Henrika Helsinki Roosters
Tykkyläinen Satu Joensuu Wolves

Defensive line:

Abbas Mamode Milena Tampere Saints
Chichaeva Julija Mikkeli Bouncers
Kallio Riikka Helsinki Roosters
Lehen Janina Helsinki Wolverines
Pekkarinen Laura Mikkeli Bouncers
Rahkonen Hilkka Helsinki Roosters
Ristimäki Jenni Helsinki Wolverines
Saarinen Katrina Turku Trojans
Seppälä Elina Helsinki Wolverines
Vaara Nelli Helsinki Roosters
Ziemann Merle Helsinki Roosters

Linebackers:

Carlson Kaisa Tampere Saints
Kemppi Emilia Mikkeli Bouncers
Kero Elina Helsinki Wolverines
Kosonen Matilda Porvoo Butchers
Moisanen Minna Oulu Northern Lights
Möttönen Tiina Porvoo Butchers
Rohkimainen Mia Helsinki Wolverines
Roiha Satu Oulu Northern Lights
Turunen Julia Helsinki Roosters

Defensive backs:

Byman Saga Helsinki Roosters
Bäckman Anette Helsinki Wolverines
Juntunen Anna-Reetta Oulu Northern Lights
Laajapuro Evi Kuopio Steelers
Mäkinen Terhi Turku Trojans
Nikander Janika Helsinki Wolverines
Pudas Johanna Helsinki Wolverines
Raipela Marfa Tampere Saints
Rantanen Heta Helsinki Wolverines
Tuovinen Jonna Jyväskylä Jaguars
Tähkänen Iina Tampere Saint

Coaches:

Head coach/offensive line: Mika Eloranta

Offensive coordinator: Petteri Salovalta

Defensive coordinator/linebackers: Toni Luomajoki

Quarterbacks:  Teemu Kuusisto

Running backs: Mikko Rissanen

Defensive line: Heikki Kuusela

Defensive backs: Mikko Soininen

Special teams and scouting: Samu Juppo

Manager: Petra Eloranta

John McKeon
John McKeon is a former professional and collegiate American Football player and coach now living and working in New York. His goal is to spread news, information, and opinion on the global growth of the sport he loves.
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