Germany: Dresden Monarchs come from behind to down Cologne Crocodiles

The Dresden Monarchs (7-3) came from behind twice and scored four second half touchdowns en route to defeating the Cologne Crocodiles (5-5) in a German Football League North division game Sunday at Sportkpark Hohenberg stadium in Cologne.

With the win the Monarchs are close to clinching a playoff spot with three games left in the regular season. Cologne playoff chances were hurt by the loss but they still have a mathematical chance of making it.

Dresden running back Joe Bergeron scored three touchdowns, two rushing and one receiving, and quarterback Garrett Safron threw two touchdown passes and ran for three more. Receiver Mike Schallo caught a touchdown pass from Safron as well.

Crocodiles quarterback Ben Mentges threw two touchdown passes to receiver Trevor Vasey  and ran one in himself to account for Cologne’s scoring.

Cologne took an early lead behind the support of a wildly cheering home crowd as running back Kevin Parks helped set up the first touchdown with excellent field position. Mentges called his own number and Cologne took the lead 7-0. Dresden responded though with Bergeron scoring on a 23 yard run after having two touchdowns called back, to tie the score at 7-7.

Photo: Nadine Bartz

Mentges went back to work, marching the Crocodiles down the field and finishing the drive with a touchdown pass to Vasey to regain the lead, 14-7.

Again the Monarchs countered with Bergeron hauling in a touchdown pass from Safron and the score was tied midway through the second quarter, 14-14.

The Dresden defense finally got a stop handing the ball over the Safron and the offense deep in Crocodiles territory. Safron made no mistake, running the ball in himself and the Monarchs headed into the halftime break leading 21-14.

The crowd was getting its money’s worth as Mentges came out in the third quarter on fire, hitting Vasey on a beautiful 70 yard touchdown pass tying the game again, 21-21.

Dresden’s offense then found another gear with Bergeron doing the damage, giving the Monarchs excellent field position. Safron carried the ball in again and Dresden regained the lead, 28-21. An errant Cologne punt gave the Monarchs the call again in Crocodiles territory and Bergeron found the end zone for his third touchdown and Dresden was firmly in control, 35-21.

A failed fourth down attempt in their own end by the Crocodiles allowed Dresden to score again with Safron hitting Schallo and then an interception of a Mentges pass led to Safron’s final touchdown of the day.

The Monarchs improved their record to 7-3 but still have to play Cologne again as well as two tough games against the Berlin Rebels and Kiel Baltic Hurricanes. Cologne dropped to 5-5 but have games remaining against the Berlin Adler and Hildesheim Invaders, both winnable, as well as the New Yorker Lions and Dresden again.


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