Austria – Charity Bowl XX – Helsinki Roosters (Finland) @Dacia Vienna Vikings, April 29, 12p (6a EST) (Score updates)

The defending Austrian champion Dacia Vienna Vikings and Europe #3 will play host to the defending Finnish champion Helsinki Roosters, Europe #5, Sunday, April 29 in Vienna in the 20th Charity Bowl.

The Charity Bowl which has been held annually since 1999 in Vienna features a top Austrian club or even the national team with the game proceeds donated to local charities.

This year, the Helsinki Roosters are making the trip to Vienna. Helsinki has played one preseason a couple of weeks ago against Sweden’s Stockholm Mean Machines. Meanwhile, Vienna has five straight wins under their belts and top the standings in the Austrian Football League.

Nevertheless, Roosters head coach Juha Hakala is confidence that his coordinators will have all in order when the game starts:

“We had our 3rd Camp of the offseason last weekend and then we are going have normal in season week before the game to prepare. Our OC Mikko Koikkalainen and DC Kalle Karppinen have created solid game plan for the game.”

Vikings  quarterback Garrett Safron leads the AFL in rushing with 514 yards and a league-best 8 TDs. He is also the second leading passer with 1,259 yards and a league leading 19 TDs. In other words, to stop the Vikings you have to stop Safron. The 6’1″, 200 lb native of Santa Monica, California spent the 2017 season with the Dresden Monarchs in the German Football League throwing for 3,463 yards and 45 touchdowns while rushing for 884 and another 14 touchdowns. In 2016, he guided Italy’s Milano Seamen to the Champions League final as well as the Italian semifinals where they lost by a single point to the eventual champions, the Milano Rhinos.

Brandon Connette led Helsinki to their sixth straight Finnish championship in 2017 and also the Northern European Football League title.The  6’2″, 225 lb and a graduate of Duke University from Corona, California, threw for 2,675 yards and a league-leading 35 TDs for the Roosters in 2017 following a banner year in Germany in 2016 for the Dresden Monarchs when he threw  for 4,747 yards and 68 touchdowns with a passing efficiency rating of 194.7, all three marks tops in the league.


Roosters defensive coordinator Kalle Karppinen’s challenge is Vienna’s big play potential all over the field.

“The Vikings have a well coached offense with lots of talent and big play potential at several key positions, so we need to play close to a perfect game defensively. The challenge is to limit the effectiveness of their leading wide receivers Reece Horn and Bernhard Seikovits, while at the same time staying balanced against the run and the threat of a scrambling QB. We will be well prepared to get the best possible personnel matchups, as well as use different coverages to put our defenders in position to make the necessary plays.”

Vikings HC Chris Calaycay believes the contest will be decided in the trenches:

“Obviously, we have to take care of the import positions and understand where they are and what they are doing on the field, but in the end I see this game being decided up front.  Our DL crew has been tough for offenses the last two years and we have been able to pressure QBs and force a lot of bad throws and interceptions.”

About Charity Bowl

Strong helps weak

The Helsinki Roosters and Dacia Vienna Vikings face each other in the 20th Vinea Resort Charity Bowl. Charity Bowl was launched in 1999 under the motto ”Strong helps weak”, when the Dacia Vienna Vikings wanted to demonstrate that social engagement beyond the usual paths can be extremely successful. Started as a noble gesture, it has grown over the years into a significant help for charitable organizations and charitable initiatives in Austria which have benefited to the tune of more than  150.000 € over the years.

Scoring updates

The game will not be livestreamed but quarterly updates will be available on the Vienna Vikings Facebook page.


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