Italy: Modena Vipers begin to climb the standings, Seamen, Guelfi continue to dominate

With the Italian Football League now in the back half of the regular season, the favorites are pulling away, but a couple of upstarts are starting to make noise.

The Modena Vipers, newcomers to the top league this year, claimed another win this week, sending out a statement that they are not only trying to avoid relegation this year, but actually competing for a championship. Elsewhere, the two top teams in the IFL, the Milano Seamen and Firenze Guelfi, further cemented their positions atop the standings.

Firenze Guelfi (4-1) 42 – Mastini Verona (1-3) 0

As predicted, the Guelfi steamrolled Mastini this past weekend. Firenze’s rushing attack put up another 300+ yard game, despite the fact that only one rusher – quarterback Andrea Fimiani – gaining over 100 yards.

There is little to comment on regarding the Guelfi’s performance this season outside of its dominance. Since their week 1 loss to the Parma Panthers, the team has gone from strength to strength dispatching weaker opponents. 

However, with all the hype surrounding Firenze, they are yet to face the Seamen or even the Vipers. They have had time to form an identity on both sides of the ball but will have to wait until week 10 before they see the IFL’s top teams again.

Milano Seamen (4-0) 42 – Warriors Bologna (1-4) 3

The second blowout of the weekend was also predicted. The Warriors have proved too inconsistent this season to effectively match up against a top-class Seamen side and this was only magnified with the absence of import quarterback Gabriel Cousineau.

Seamen quarterback Luke Zahradka tore the Bologna defense apart, maintaining his position as the league’s most dangerous passer. On just 15 completions, Zahradka threw for 383 yards and five touchdowns, averaging a quarter of the field per pass.

Vipers Modena (2-1) 35 – Lazio Ducks (2-3) 21

Vipers RB Photo: Maurizio Elisio

The third and final game of week 7 was a far more lopsided game than the score suggests. The contest was scheduled to be the closest of the week with two mid-table teams hoping to use each other as a leg up into the top half of the tables.

But despite an enticing stage being set for the two, the Vipers got up early and didn’t take their foot off the gas. After a pair of touchdowns from both quarterback Danny Vanatsky and running back Ervis Cira, the Vipers were up 28-0. 

It wasn’t until midway through the third quarter that the Ducks got on the board. In regular Ducks fashion, they proved to be a menace in the back end of the game, outscoring the Vipers 21-7. But this was all for naught as the deficit proved insurmountable.

Lazio are a solid mid-standings team and have given some of the top teams a run for their money this year. Modena handled the win competently and have now shown that the win over Parma was not a fluke, but instead a notice to the rest of the league that they are here to stay and are gunning for an Italian Championship

Daniel Mackenzie is a Press Association graduate who has worked in B2B journalism and comms in the third sector; with experience in both education and human rights. He played for the London Warriors for 15 years as well as Team Great Britain .