Jerusalem ‘Big Blue’ Lions capture 3rd straight Israel Bowl

The Jerusalem ‘Big Blue’ Lions captured their third straight Israel Bowl title with a 29-26 victory over the Petah Tikva Troopers.

What a game! Offense, defense, special teams, suspense, a great crowd and perfect weather for Israel Bowl XII

Effi Mishaan started the game off with a 94-yard kickoff return for a touchdown (shades of Devin Hester), and put the Lions up 14-0 with a rushing TD. Dani Eastman put the Troopers on the board with a rushing TD of his own on the first play of the second quarter, and with 2:22 left in the half, Lions rookie phenom David Fitoussi put the defending champs up 21-6. However, Eastman narrowed the deficit a minute later with a touchdown pass to his brother, David, making the halftime score 21-12, Lions.

Effi Mishaan with the game-sealing TD Photo: Taly Erel

Eastman ran in another score, making the score 21-20 in the middle of the third quarter, and with under 5 minutes left in the game, Petah Tikva took their first lead of the game at 26-21, with a touchdown pass from Avrami Farkas to Oren Yakuel. The Lions didn’t give up and after another great return by Mishaan, Fitoussi ran in another score. Mishaan the intercepted a pass by Farkas with 2:41 left, and a first down was all the Lions needed to clinch their 4th-ever title.

Dani Eastman Photo: Dotan Doran

Mishann won the Israel Bowl MVP award, contributing to the victory in all three facets of the game. He had a rushing TD, a return TD (among his 190 kick return yards) and the crown-clinching interception. Fitoussi finished with 11 carries for 91 yards and 2 scores. The Lions defense worked well as a unit and were lead by Mordy Charnowitz, Hillel Goldstein and Jerome Wojtalik

Dani Eastman finished with 30 carries (!) for 121 yards and 2 scores, adding a passing TD and six tackles. Yakuel caught 4-115-1 and Ahmed Abu Gaber had 5 tackles, 2 TFL and a forced fumble

The countdown to Israel Bowl XIII has begun!

Watch the entire game here.

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