The Turku Trojans (7-3) will clash with the Helsinki Roosters (7-3) in the semifinals of Finland’s Maple League in a rematch of last year’s championship game.
In that game, Sean Shelton was the starting quarterback for the Roosters who went on to win the game and the Finnish title 21-7.
This time Shelton is behind center for Turku while Micah Brown is the signal caller for Helsinki now. This is the 55th meeting between these two clubs in their history but only the sixth time the Roosters and Trojans have met in the Finnish semifinals and the Trojans have the decided edge leading the playoff series 4-1.
The teams met twice in the regular season with the Trojans winning at Helsinki in June and the Roosters returning the favor at Turku in July. The last time teams met in semifinals was in 1996. The game marks 39th post season game for Trojans and 63rd for the Roosters.
The two quarterbacks, Mic Brown for Helsinki and Sean Shelton arrived in Finland within a couple of weeks of each other this season, Brown after winning the Polish championship with the Gdynia Seahawks and after accomplishing the same feat in Austria with the Swarco Raiders. They have both posted similar numbers. Brown has thrown for 1,255 yards and 10 touchdowns while Shelton has tossed 15 touchdowns passes and recorded 1,086 yards in passing yardage.
Roosters running back Jaycen Taylor Spears led the league in rushing carrying the ball 154 times for 1,277 yards and 16 touchdowns. His counterpart with Turku, Rickey Stevens, was right behind him with 156 carries for 1,112 yards and 15 touchdowns.
The game will be too close to predict.
Kickoff: 3:30 PM (8:30 AM EDT).
In the other semifinal, the Seinäjoki Crocodiles beat the Helsinki 69ers 28-7.
Maple Bowl XXXVI will be played on Saturday September 12 at Sonera Stadium in Helsinki.