CEFL: Austria’s Swarco Raiders double up on Prague Black Panthers

The defending champion Swarco Raiders opened their 2018 Central European Football League campaign by beating the Prague Black Panthers 44-21 in Prague in CEFL West action.

Swarco quarterback Sean Shelton threw three touchdown passes and ran for two more in an impressive performance. Wide receivers Daniel Saurer and Adrian Platzgummer both caught touchdown passes as did running back Sandro Platzgummer. Thomas Pichlmann led all scorers, kicking three field goals and five extra points.

For Prague, running back William Young returned a kickoff 93 yards for a touchdown and scored again late in the game on an eight yard touchdown. Linebacker Tomáš Svoboda recovered a Shelton fumble in the end zone for the Black Panthers other touchdown. Mark Hrubon kicked all three extra points.

Swarco WR Daniel Saurer Photo: Libor Vočadlo Photography

The Raiders wasted no time in setting the tone as Shelton capped the opening drive of the game with a 15 yard touchdown to Saurer on a screen pass.

Shelton called his own number on the next possession, scoring from seven yards out and Swarco led 14-0 still in the first quarter. That’s when Young proved how much of a difference maker he can be as he fumbled the ensuing kickoff, picked it up and raced 93 yards to give Prague new life.

This was Sean Shelton’s cue. He simply found a streaking Adrian Platzgummer on the very next series, hitting him for a 57 yard score at the end of the first quarter to increase the lead to 21-7. However, in his only mistake of the game, Shelton fumbled in his own end zone early in the second quarter and Svoboda recovered, and Prague again pulled within a touchdown, 21-14.

With the Prague offense struggling, Shelton moved his team within field goal range and Pichlmann made no mistake kicking the first of three to extend the lead to 24-14.  Then Shelton connected with Sandro Platzgummer for a 30 yard score and Swarco went into the break leading 31-14.

Photo: Libor Vočadlo Photography

The Raiders defense keeps up the pressure in the third quarter, stripping the ball and linebacker Philipp Margreiter returned it 45 yards to the five yard line. Shelton bulled his way in on the next play to give Swarco a 38-14 lead as the third quarter ended.

The foruth quarter saw the Black Panthers offense find some momentum as after another Pichlmann field goal, Young scored again, this time from eight yards out to pull to within 41-21. Pichlmann then kicked his third field goal and Swarco went home to Innsbruck 44-21 winners.

Next up for the Raiders in CEFL play will be the Wroclaw Panthers from Poland on April 28. Prague does not play again in the CEFL until May 12 when they too take on the Panthers, in Wroclaw.

Check out the highlights from the game


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