CEFL: La Courneuve Flash earn dominant win over Thonon Black Panthers to advance to semifinals

France’s La Courneuve Flash simply did what they have been doing all season when they overwhelmed French rivals the Thonon Black Panthers 45-27 in the Central European Football League quarterfinals this past weekend.

They seemed to score at will.

Despite surrendering 27 points, La Courneuve simply put this game out of reach behind a superb offensive performance. The Flash have been Thonon’s Achilles heel all season, and that trend continued in this game.

This was one of the biggest matchups in the CEFL quarterfinals. Both squads have dominated their opponents in France, and the CEFL poses a key opportunity to find other worthy competition in international play. More importantly, La Courneuve took advantage of another chance to prove that they have the Black Panthers in their rearview mirror in league play.

Flash QB Conor Miller – Photo Guillaume Mouchet – La Ferme du Pecheur

Entering this game, the Flash were 8-0 in the North division of the French D1 Elite Championship while the Black Panthers were 7-1, their only loss coming at the hands of the Flash in a 35-0 spanking. With this win, the Flash have now put up 80 points in two contests against Thonon.

The first quarter showed that the Black Panthers had studied and grown since that loss to start the season. Seven straight wins seemed to help them gain chemistry, and they matched the Flash score-for-score to end the first period at 14 points each.

Photo Guillaume Mouchet – La Ferme du Pecheur

In the second quarter, however, the Flash began to put this game out of reach. After Stéphane Fortes moved the chains, running back Jason Bofunda found the end zone to put his team up a score.

Flash DB #28 Vincent Lemoine making the game-clinching interception – Photo Guillaume Mouchet – La Ferme du Pecheur

The Flash then forced a 3-and-out, proving that they could still stifle Thonon’s offense the same way they did in the beginning of the season, when the Black Panthers were held to just 100 yards. With a short field, quarterback Conor Miller had little trouble leading his team to its second straight touchdown to double up the score to 28-14.

Despite scoring two more times in the third quarter, the Black Panthers just couldn’t keep up with the Flash’s output. La Courneuve added another pair of touchdowns and then Benjamin Bono kicked a field goal. Thonon just could not catch up.

With the win, La Courneuve re-asserted their dominance over their home country rival and also earned a spot in the semifinals of the CEFL.