Braunschweig New Yorker Lions Defeat Vienna Vikings In A Big6 Thriller

The Braunschweig New Yorker Lions made a statement in edging the Vienna Vikings 21-14 in their opening game of the Big6 tournament last weekend in Vienna.

In front of a cheering hometown Vienna crowd in their first game of the season, the Lions went toe to toe with the Vikings and found a way to win.

The Vikings defense were a match for the powerful Braunschweig offense from the outset forcing the Lions to punt on the first series of the game. But Braunschweig defensive back Durrell Givens picked off Vikings quarterback Bernhard Seikovits, taking the ball down to the Vikings 14 yard line. Three plays later, quarterback Grant Enders connected with Jan Hilgenfeldt for the game’s first score giving the Lions  7-0 lead.

Big6 - Braunschweig-Vienna action - 2pic.2

Photos: Florian L. Schellhorn

Vienna responded though as Seikovits engineered a drive of his own on the next possession. He capped it with a 21 yard touchdown pass to Dominik Bundschuh evening the score at 7-7 which is how the first half ended.

The Lions stymied the Vikings on the first series of the second half and took over at their own 40 yard line. From there, Enders marched his team down the field, relying on running back David McCants and connecting with Hilgenfeldt and Niklas Römer . He finished the drive off himself running it in from a yard out giving Braunschweig a 14-7 lead.

The Lions offense seemed to find a rhythm in the third quarter and with the defense getting stops, Braunschweig began moving the ball. However a couple of rare fumbles by McCants kept them from scoring until the fourth quarter as Enders again threw a touchdown pass, this time from 25 yards out to Römer extending the lead to 21-7.

Vienna‘s offense finally began to click with Seikovits tossing a 15 yard touchdown pass to Dominik Bubik late in the game to close the gap to 21-14. But Braunschweig recovered the onside kick attempt snuffing out Vienna‘s last chance to guarantee a spot in the Big6 final.

The Lions will now host France’s Aix en Provence Argonautes to decide the Group A Eurobowl finalist. If they beat the Argonautes, they advance to the final. If they lose, Vienna will play in the Eurobowl championship game. The Vikings defeated Aix en Provence 42-0 in the opening game of the tournament.

In the other Big6 action on the weekend, the Swarco Raiders embarrassed the Berlin Adler 57-0 in Berlin.

Photo credit: Florian L. Schellhorn

Roger Kelly is an editor and a writer for AFI. A former PR Director the B.C. Lions of the Canadian Football League for 7 years, he now lives in Sweden writing about and scouting American Football throughout the world.