The Frankfurt Universe delighted almost 2,000 hometown fans Sunday in blanking the visiting Allgäu Comets 20-0 in the opening weekend of play in the German Football League.
There were enormous doubts that the Universe would even be able to field a team with bankruptcy proceedings swirling, so the fans not only were treated to a team but a win as well.
And a convincing win too. Although it wasn’t pretty, it was crucial.
Frankfurt’s defense was superb only allowing the Comets to cross midfield three times and not once to reach the red zone. The Universe outgained Allgäu by a wide margin, 272 yards to 88.
Quarterback Steve Cluley threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns with Sebastian Sagne catching one of those scoring passes and David Merkl the other. Marius Duis kicked a field goal and an extra point while Merkl also added a field goal and extra point.
For the Comets, quarterback Calvin Stitt had a day he would like to forget completing just seven of 22 passes for 53 yards.
Duis put the first points on the board on the opening drive, kicking a 40 yard field goal for a 3-0 Universe lead. With Allgäu unable to move the ball effectively, midway through the second quarter, Cluley started to find his rhythm, hitting Sagne for a 33 yard touchdown to extend the lead to 10-0.
Late in the first half, with the Universe defense keeping Stitt and the Comets offense in check, Cluley found Merkl from four yards out and the lead was 17-0 at the half.
Frankfurt managed to reach the Comets 11 yard line late in the third quarter but only came away with a field goal.
Neither team could mount much offense the rest of the way as the defenses rose up, recording three straight interceptions with Allgäu picking off the Universe twice and Frankfurt returning the favor once.
Universe head coach Brian Caler was satisfied with the win:
“For the first game, everything went very well, except for a few small things and a few unnecessary drops. Although Steve Cluley has only been with the team for two weeks, he delivered an excellent game.”