Germany: Dresden Monarchs edge Berlin Rebels on final play

The Dresden Monarchs kicked a field goal with four seconds on the clock to come from behind and defeat the Berlin Rebels 20-18 in front of a crowd of almost 3,000 at Dresden’s Heinz-Steyer Stadion Sunday in German Football League action.

With the win, Dresden avenged an earlier loss to the Rebels and improves to 9-2 and sole possession of second place in the GFL North.

The Monarchs jumped out to a 17-3 lead in the third quarter but watched as Berlin roared back in the fourth quarter scoring two touchdowns and adding a field goal with just over a minute and a half remaining to take an 18-17 lead.

Then Florian Finke stepped up with the game winning field goal.

Dresden wide receiver Mitchell Paige was unstoppable in this game catching 17 passes for 244 yards and a touchdown while quarterback Trenton Norvell completed 24 of 42 passes for 297 yards and two touchdowns but also threw three interceptions. Chris Genau caught the other touchdown pass while Finke kicked two field goals, including the game winner. Running back Glen Toonga carried the ball 16 times for 83 yards.

For the Rebels, quarterback Terrell Robinson threw for 150 yards but rushed for 79 and a touchdown. Linebacker Rory Johnson scored on a 60 yard fumble return and Philipp Friis Andersen kicked two field goals.

The teams traded field goals in the first quarter but Norvell mounted a 13 play, 72 yard drive that ate up six minutes early in the second quarter capping it with a one yard touchdown pass to Paige to give Dresden a 10-3 lead which they took into the halftime break.

The Monarchs added to the lead on their first possession of the second half as Norvell engineered another scoring drive, this one 82 yards finishing with a touchdown pass to Genau and the lead stretched to 17-3 with four minutes left in the third quarter.

That’s when Berlin began chipping away at the lead. First Phillip Stegemann picked off a Norvell pass and then Robinson drove the Rebels down to the four yard line and scored on the next play to narrow the lead to 17-9. Then Johnson scooped up a Norvell fumble on the very next series racing 60 yards to close the gap to 17-15 midway through the fourth quarter.

Norvell tossed another interception with Johnson grabbing at his own 41 yard line. Robinson then took the Rebels down to the Dresden eight yard line and Andersen calmly booted the ball through to give Berlin an 18-17 lead with exactly one minute and thirty seven seconds to go.

Norvell then redeemed himself though, marching the Monarchs 63 yards in 93 seconds and Finke did the rest, kicking a 29 yard field goal.

The win was important for Dresden as it gives them some breathing room with three games left in the regular season. Berlin has a game in hand though and in case of a tie in the standings with the Monarchs, the Rebels would take second by virtue of a better points differential in the two games played between the two.

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