On Saturday May 6th in Turku at Turun Urheilupuisto, the Helsinki Roosters beat the Turku Trojans in the Vaahteraliiga season opener. The Roosters controlled this game from the opening drive by forcing 3 consecutive 3 & outs by the Trojans to begin the game. Ultimately, the Roosters stats proved their dominance as they accumulated a total of 344 yards on offense while only allowing the Trojans only 97 total yards.
The Roosters did a great job of spreading the ball to their play makers on offense throughout the game. The Trojans had no answer for the high-powered offense and did little to slow it down. On the defensive side of the ball the Roosters played physically and stopped the Trojans from ever gaining any traction to make this game competitive. The final score 39-3 in favor of the Roosters was a very accurate depiction of the game played on the field.
The first drive for the Trojans set the tone of the game. The Trojans had a quick 3 & out followed by a bad snap on the punt attempt which led to the Roosters beginning their first drive inside the Trojans 10 yard line. Two plays later Miro Kadmiry scored on a quick bubble pass. Starting 7-0, the rout was on!
The Trojans would go 3 & out on the next two possessions before Curtis Slater returned a 30 yard punt to put the Roosters in excellent field position on the Trojans side of the field. Brandon Connette drove the Roosters to the 2 yard line, where Young Karri Pajarinen punched it in for the score. Roosters were leading 14-0 at the end of the first quarter.
For the fourth consecutive drive, the Trojans managed another 3 & out. Luckily for the them, the Roosters committed a penalty that resulted in an automatic first down to save the drive. Josh Quezada put together a few tough runs to get the Trojans moving down the field. Quezada made the Roosters defense work for every tackle against him as he broke many first try attempts. Despite Quezada’s great individual effort, the drive stalled and the Trojans had to settle for a field goal. That would be their only score of the game making it 14-3 in the second quarter.
After allowing a field goal, the Roosters offense got aggressive. On 4th & 2 in their own territory, the Roosters decided to go for it. Brandon Connette ran the ball on a keeper and gained just enough for a first down. After that bold move, Connette connected with Robin Drockila then Bernard Luster for huge plays to get the Roosters in the red zone. For his 3rd straight completion, Brandon Connette completed a short pass to Bernard Luster to make the score 21-3 in favor of the Roosters. The next possession by the Trojans was yet another 3 & out. After a penalty put the Trojans in 4th and 29 from their own 5 yard line, there was a bad snap over the punter’s head which lead to a safety for the Roosters. That made the score 23-3 as Roosters’ lead increased. The Roosters followed this good fortune with a quick march down the field. Then Ville-Valtteri Suojanen got involved for the Trojans defense making two pass breakups to help stall the Roosters in the red zone. The Roosters kicked a field goal that made it 26-3 at halftime.
The second half began similarly to the first half as the Roosters marched down field using a combination of bubble routes to Miro Kadmiry repeatedly. Once in the redzone, there were a few penalties against the Roosters as they were put in a 4th & goal situation from the Trojans 15 yard line. The Roosters stayed aggressive and went for the 4th and long play. Brandon Connette escaped pressure to find Bernard Luster in the back of the end zone for the second score between them. At 32-3 the Trojans were offering no resistance to the Roosters heading into the 4th quarter.Third Quarter
The Roosters added gas to the fire in the last quarter of the game. After another great punt return by Curtis Slater, the Roosters were in great field position on the Trojans side of the field. Using a few key catches by Miro Kadmiry to get to the goal line, the Roosters scored using the fade ball to Timmy Thomas who out-muscled a defender to make the catch. Now 39-3, that would be the last score in this game. Late in the 4th quarter the Trojans were marching down the field behind the great running of Josh Quezada and looked like they could put up some late points. But Viljo Lempinen stopped that momentum with a diving interception to keep the Trojans out of the end zone for good.
Perfect Pervis View
This game was played by one championship caliber team and one team in a rebuilding season. The Roosters proved that their aggressive defense and new look read-option offense are the backbone of their playing style and will lead them to victory more times than not. The Trojans have a lot of work to do to get on track and compete in the Maple League this season, starting up front with their offensive line. Josh Quezada is a talented running back who runs hard, but will not survive an entire season of 20+ carries a game with no line support.
Next week the Helsinki Roosters will take on the Seinäjoki Crocodiles on Thursday 5/11, while the Trojans will face the Wasa Royals on Monday 5/15.