Germany: Berlin Rebels snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in thrilling win over Saarland Hurricanes

Trailing 32-14 with eight minutes left in the third quarter and with fans already starting to leave the stadium thinking the game was over, the home team Berlin Rebels dug deep and staged a comeback for the ages as they defeated the Saarland Hurricanes 39-38 in a key interconference German Football League matchup this past weekend.

And it took a final play, goal line stand to finish it.

That’s not how the game started for the Rebels though.

Neither team could move the ball early, and it was the Hurricanes who took control as on Saarland’s next possession, quarterback Andrew Brito marched his team on an eight play, 53 yard drive capping it himself by getting around the end and racing into the end zone for a 15 yard touchdown. The 2 point conversion was good and the Hurricanes took an 8-0 lead.

Berlin responded as four plays later, quarterback Tyquell Fields connected with Kirby Lewis for a 42 yard score narrowing the gap to 8-6.

Berlin TE Julian Huber

Brito took control again, this time moving his team from the 25 down to the Berlin 12. He then hit Nathaniel Gutierrez wide open in the end zone and with another successful two-point conversion, upped the lead to 16-6 early in the second quarter.

Fields was intercepted by Hurricanes defensive back Thomas Jacob at the Berlin 33 yard line and Brito made no mistake. Two plays later he found Spencer Corona from 21 yards out and with a third successful two-point conversion the Hurricanes took a commanding 24-6 lead still early in the second quarter.

Fields got the Rebels offense moving on the next possession, driving his team from the 25 yard line and then capping the drive with a 12 yard touchdown pass to Austin Osborne to close the gap to 24-14 after a successful two-point conversion with three minutes to go in the half.

Saarland answered again, as in four plays Brito marched his team down to the eight yard line and then connected with Marvin Fuchs to boost the lead to 32-14 going into the break.

Photo: Christian Gosslar

The Rebels came out in the third quarter a charged up team and Fields took his team on an eight play, 72 yard drive finishing it with a seven yard touchdown. He scored the two-point conversion and narrowed the lead to 32-22 with seven minutes left in the quarter.

Brito and the Saarland offense then moved the ball into Rebels territory but could not advance past the 42 yard line and Berlin took over. In four plays, Fields moved the ball down to the Saarland 33 yard line and then connected with Julian Huber for a touchdown. For the first time in the game, a successful PAT was kicked and Berlin had crept even closer, 32-29 early in the fourth.

A huge turnover gave Berlin the ball back at the Hurricanes 28 yard line as kick returner Jason Young fumbled the ball and Wojciech Perz pounced on it. However, the Rebels could not capitalize and Saarland got the ball back at their own 34. They, in turn stalled and Fields and the Berlin offense took over again in excellent field position, at the Hurricanes 38.

Fields moved his team down to the Saarland 12 yard line and Kris Cain booted a 29 yard field goal to tie the game at 32-32 with just under two minutes left in the game.

Saarland QB Andrew Brito Photo: Christian Gosslar

Perz struck again picking off Brito at the Berlin 40 yard line. Fields then hit Kirby twice in a row for 12 and 34 yards to move the ball down to the Saarland 14 yard line and then scored himself. Cain kicked the extra point and with 53 seconds left, the Rebels took the lead 39-32.

Undeterred, Brito moved his team from the 24 down to the Berlin seven with three seconds left on the clock. He then found Corona in the end zone to bring the lead down to 39-38. However, instead of kicking the extra point, Saarland opted to try for the two-point conversion and Brito was stopped inches the goal line.

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