Italy’s Milano Seamen stun Berlin Rebels from Germany to win Big6 opener

The Milano Seamen surprised the powerful Berlin Rebels, German quarterfinalists in 2016, holding them to two touchdowns and eeking out a 14-13 come-from-behind victory to take a huge step in Big6 action.

Playing in front of a wildly enthusiastic home crowd, Seamen quarterback Luke Zahradka kept his calm and led his team on a second half comeback that shocked Berlin.

The Rebels had taken a 7-0 halftime lead on a 47 yard pass and run and extended it to 13-0 in the third quarter on a 50 yard fumble recovery for a touchdown. That is when Zahradka took charge and the Seamen’s defense with defensive coordinator Randy Beverly calling the plays turned the game around.

Photo: Dario Fumagalli

Berlin’s powerful running game with Lawrence McCoy and Chris Smith, which led the German league in rushing in 2016, was stymied and could never really get untracked. Meanwhile, Danilo Bonaparte scored a three yard touchdown and then Zahradka scored a late touchdown. Kicker Stefano Di Tunisi then added the crucial extra point and Beverly’s defense held on for the final four minutes to give Milano a shocking win and a leg up in the Big6 standings.

Next week the Seamen return to their Divisione 1 Italian schedule and face the Torino Giaguari on April 29th. The Rebels look to get on the winning track in their German Football League season opener against the Berlin Adler in the Berlin Derby.

As far as Big6 action goes, the Seamen travel to Frankfurt to face the Samsung Frankfurt Universe on May 7th. The Rebels with host the Universe the following week in Berlin on May 13th.

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