IFAF U20 World Junior Championships: Austria sends shockwaves with convincing win over Team Canada 2

Austria fired an early warning shot and shook off the underdogs tag with a convincing first round 41-13 win over Canada 2 to open the 2024 IFAF World Junior Championships in Edmonton.

MVP wide receiver Nils Keimel lived up to his billing as a player to watch as he reeled in 4 passes from quarterback Michael Szabo for 147 yards and 2 touchdowns. On the ground, running back Kevin Stanisi breached the end zone three times.

“The whole team feels amazing,” said Keimel. “I think the strength of this team is the defense and then we are able to adapt to the situations they put us in.”

Austria advances to the semifinals where either the defending world champion Canada or Brazil awaits at Commonwealth Stadium on Wednesday, kickoff 5pm local time.

Photo: Michael Preston

Austria raced to an early lead that became a 20-7 halftime advantage and the six-time successive European champions showed no sign of letting up after the interval. They were excellent in all three phases of the game with forced fumbles and interceptions on defense and a successful fake punt that halted a brief Canadian fightback in the second half.

“It feels so good,” said Austria head coach Roman Floredo. “It’s the first win for an Austrian team against a team from North America. I’m so proud of my team, they did a great job. I told them to leave everything on the field because they had nothing to lose. Our plan was to not be afraid and to play our game.

“Now we are moving on, we will prepare and be ready. We’re probably the underdog. We will play our game, as we did today, and go out on the field with a broad chest.”

Michael Preston (@PRMikePreston) is currently working with IFAF in a PR capacity. He recently covered Super Bowl LVII as a member of the NFL PR team as he has done for 20+ years. He has held communications positions with NFL Europe, the North