France Overcomes Finland 35-21; Captures Bronze & Berth in 2015 World Championships!

France encountered surprise resistance from a determined Finnish national team to take third place in the European American football  Championships. Overwhelming favorites entering the contest, the French team had to lean on the legs of tailback Stephen Yepmo, who had a stellar day, rushing for 209 yards on 25 carries while also scoring a touchdown. Finland’s Veikka Lehtonen also proved to be tough to stop,  gaining 131 yards on 19 carries and adding a touchdown while also throwing for another.


Neither team looked impressive early in the game as penalties, turnovers and miscues plagued both squads.  Finally Tuomas Leinonen of Finland picked off a Mattison pass and Finland took  the ball over at France’s  33 yard line, only to badly miss a field goal three plays later. France finally found a rhythm and drove from their own 33 to score with just under three minutes to go in the quarter. Stephan Yempo led the way after quarterback Perez Mattison hit Louvin for a 40 yard gain.

Two series later, Finland tied the game as Veikka Lehtonen put his team on his shoulders, running for a total of 24 yards on the drive and throwing  a 56 yard TD pass to help Finland even the score at 7-7.

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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.