Brazil’s João Pessoa Continue Dominance in CBFA’s Conferencia Nordeste

The João Pesso Espectros move in the CBFA Superliga semi-finals with a 27-20 victory over the top ranked Ceara Caçadores.

The Espectros comenced the games scoring with their vaunted return team, as Heron Azevedo (Pacific University) returned the games opening kickoff for a touchdown. The Caçadores answered with a field goal from Danilo Arrais, settling the scoreboard at 7-3 to end the first quarter.

The Caçadores pulled ahead 10-3 in the second quarter on some trickery, when receiver Talon Roggash lined up at QB and threw a touchdown pass to the teams normal signal caller, Romário Reis. The Espectros answered again with their return squad, as Carlos Cox (Friends University) took the ensuing kickoff to the house to put João Pessoa ahead 14-10 as the teams entered the locker rooms of Estadio Presidente Vargas for half time.

Conference titles taste so good, once it hits your lips!: The João Pessoa Espectros dropped a couple of games during the regular season, but re-asserted their dominance of Northeastern Brazil with a 7th consecutive conference title. Photo credit: Anderson Silva Fotografia

Conference titles taste so good, once it hits your lips!: The João Pessoa Espectros dropped a couple of games during the regular season, but defensive end, Livanaldo Barbosa and his team re-asserted their dominance of Northeastern Brazil with a 7th consecutive conference title. Photo credit: Anderson Silva Fotografia

The top-seeded Caçadores had no quit in them, and their go-to man all year, TB Battle, stepped up as he had all season, with a 3rd quarter pick six top ut the home team Caçadores ahead 17-14. Later in the third, Espectros kicking ace, Diego Aranha, tied it back up at 17 with a field goal.

Aranha added another 3 points to put the visitors back on top 20-17, but Danilo Arrais came up big yet again for the team from Ceara, knocking in a field goal to tie the 4th quarter score at 20. This led to a Hollywood-like performance by the man that Espectros fans have been waiting to see all season. Rodrigo Dantas, the Espectros quarterback who had led his team to a national title in 2015, but been sidelined since the first game of the season, hit Cox for the go ahead touchdown late in the 4th quarter. Aranha netted the extra point, producing a final score of 27-20, and seeing the João Pessoa Espectros walk out of Fortaleza with a 7th consecutive Northeastern championship.

Ceara Caçadores star quarterback, Romário Reis, and his sqad, will be looking for a national title in 2017. Photo credit: Stephan Eilert Photography

Ceara Caçadores star quarterback, Romário Reis, and his sqad, will be looking for a national title in 2017. Photo credit: Stephan Eilert Photography

While a quarterfinal exit has to be disappointing for Mike Lima’s Ceara team, they look to be going nowhere but up in Fortaleza, with a ton of young talent, and large, dedicated administrative group. This team won’t sneak up on people in 2017.

For the Espectros, although they are in their first year under the baby-faced, early 20’s coaching phenom, Kevin Veloso, it looks like more of the same for this veteran-laden group, as they head to yet another national semi-final against a super-talented Flamengo team.

First year HC, Kevin Veloso will take a veteran group to Rio de Janeiro on Saturday in search of a second consecutive national title game birth. Photo credit: Anderson Silva Fotografia

First year HC, Kevin Veloso will take a veteran group to Rio de Janeiro on Saturday in search of a second consecutive national title game birth. Photo credit: Anderson Silva Fotografia

João Pessoa takes on Flamengo at São Cristovao in Rio de Janeiro at 3 PM local time on Saturday, November 26, for a chance to play in the Superliga National Championship.

Clayton Lovett
Clayton Lovett has served football in Brasil in a variety of roles, including as the member of the coaching staff of two CBFA national champions (Cuiaba Arsenal 2010, 2012). Football is his hobby. Professionally, he is the founder of CS Educacional, which provides educational and competitive opportunities abroad for student-athletes.
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