The German Football League enters its 39th semifinal round this weekend with the top four teams in the regular season squaring off Saturday, September 23 to decide who will meet in German Bowl XXXIX.
And there are no surprises as the four teams with the best records in the regular season have advanced to the German Final Four.
The undefeated, 15-0 Braunschweig New Yorker Lions will meet the 13-2 Frankfurt Universe while the 15-0 Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns will take on the 11-4 Kiel Baltic Hurricanes.
This is the fifth consecutive year that the Lions have advanced to the semifinal round of the GFL and they do as the heavy favorites to win it all again. They easily defeated the Ingolstadt Dukes in the quarterfinals.They will face a Universe team that has reached this far for the first time in only its second year in the GFL but who downed the Dresden Monarchs in a physical showdown. The two teams met earlier in the year in the Eurobowl final with Braunschweig earning a lopsided win. However, this is a much improved Frankfurt team since that game in early June. The addition of quarterback Jaleel Awini seems to have given the Universe a boost.
In the other semifinal, Schwäbisch Hall will face Kiel Baltic Hurricanes team that has been building momentum and finding ways to win games. The last time these two met was in the 2012 German Bowl when the Unicorns captured the title with a thrilling 56-53 victory over Kiel.
The Hurricanes had their hands full in beating the Marburg Mercenaries last week. Trailing 14-7 at the half, Kiel scored three unanswered touchdowns for the win. Meanwhile, Schwäbisch Hall had to score an overtime touchdown to defeat the Berlin Rebels in their quarterfinal.
Watch for a full preview of both games.