Finland: Hämeenlinna Huskies dominate Butchers, secure 3rd

The Hämeenlinna Huskies defeated the Porvoon Butchers 28-6 Monday night in Finland’s Maple League to secure sole possession of third place in their final regular season game of the year.

The win avenges an earlier loss to the Butchers in 2017 and the points differential earns them a third place as the playoffs loom.

Under head coach and quarterback Stan Bedwell, the Huskies relied on a lopsided fourth quarter to pull away from Porvoon scoring three unanswered touchdowns in the space of just over four minutes.

Bedwell threw for 370 yards and two touchdowns and receiver Ruben De Ruyter had five catches for 109 yards and a touchdown and an interception. Niko Lester caught nine passes for 88 yards and a score while Roman Runner had nine receptions for 79 yards. Running back Velipekka Jaakonsaari rushed for 32 yards and caught a pass for 57 yards. Tahj Jones recovered a blocked punt in the end zone for a touchdown.

Huskies QB Stan Bedwell threw for 370 yards and 2 TDs Photo: Sami Ranta

Porvoon running back Ricky Stevens, the league’s rushing leader, was held to just 57 yards rushing and quarterback Danny Farley completed only 12 of 26 passes for 216 yards and a touchdown. Farley suffered through a long game as he was sacked four times and picked off once by a physical Huskies defense.

Hämeenlinna took the lead on their first possession with Bedwell engineering a 10 play, 73 yard drive capping it with a one yard run. The Huskies added to the lead with a safety early in the second quarter before Farley found Daniel Lumoa for a 56 yard pass and catch and then connected with Ville Kurvinen on an eight yard touchdown pass to pull closer, 8-6.

Neither team could mount much offense until Bedwell finished off an 84 yard drive which consumed over seven minutes, with a 36 yard touchdown pass to Lester with four minutes gone in the fourth quarter. Runner added the two point conversion and the Huskies took a 16-6 lead.

With the Butchers unable to move the ball, Bedwell struck again on the very next possession hitting De Ruyter with a 63 yard touchdown pass extending the lead to 22-6.

Then Hämeenlinna blocked a Butchers punt deep in Porvoon territory and Tahj Jones finally pounced on it in the end zone giving the Huskies a 28-6 lead. With the Porvoon offense stalled, Hämeenlinna held on for the win.

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