The Amsterdam Crusaders proved once again they have taken a huge step up in Europe as they dominated the 010 Trojans from Rotterdam 33-0 in a battle of two undefeated teams in Holland last weekend.
The game was held in honor of the memory of Jos Huigsloot who died tragically of a heart attack during a game five years ago between Amsterdam and the Alphen Eagles, when he collapsed suddenly on the field
The Trojans had suffered a lopsided defeat in the Dutch championship game in 2016 and entered this one with reinforcements in the form of players recruited in the off season from other clubs as well as former Crusaders coaches. But it was to no avail.
The game was expected to be one of the most evenly balanced games of the season in the Netherlands, but Amsterdam snuffed out any hopes of that.
The many weapons on offense and defense for the Crusaders soon proved too much for the Trojans.
The international cast of the Cru was on display in all its versatility. Besides American speed demon Janawski Davis, quarterback Keith Ray and defensive back Leo Watkins, Amsterdam would turn to its Belgian contingent – Stijn Dossche and Nick Vanhee – who once again played an important role on defense.
French receiver Olivier Lugier and Japanese receiver Shinichiro Takemoto both shared in the large number of completions for the Cru. German running back Gregory Ngaba Betama has developed rapidly as well.
Of course, the Dutch players themselves also made their mark. Running back Andy Evenwel managed to shrewdly evade the Rotterdam defense escaping for some long runs.
Dylan von Gerhardt, Ashneal Werleman and Jasper Nijland were able to constantly outwit the defense. Time and again, the speed of the Crusaders players proved too much for the Trojans. On defense players like veterans DiJohn Ronde played together with newcomers like Merinio Dendoe. It was impressive to see how effective the red defense wall were able to handle the Trojans attack. Anytime quarterback Anthony Slootmaker managed to get a pass off it either wasn’t caught very often or it was intercepted. Watkins, playing in the secondary, exhibited his athletic abilities picking off passes.
All in all, the Crusaders proved that all roads to the Dutch championship will go through Amsterdam this year.