Kiel Baltic Hurricanes: What lies beneath the record

The Kiel Baltic Hurricanes are now in the back end of the German Football League season with a record of 2 – 6 in the GFL North.

But there is more that lies beneath the surface with the Hurricanes, making them a deadly opponent for those still in the playoff race.

There are four playoff spots up for grabs in GFL North and four in GFL South. Although, both the GFL North and South are split into two divisions each for traveling purposes, for playoff purposes they are six and eight-team conferences.

For the Hurricanes, who now sit fifth in the six-team GFL North conference, there is still a chance to reach the playoffs with two games left in the regular season, against the Braunschweig New Yorker Lions and the Dresden Monarchs. But to do so they need to beat the Lions and then hope that the Lions lose one of the other two games they have remaining after this contest. In other words, a the case of a tie in the standings between Kiel and Braunschweig, it is their head-to-head record that is the determining factor. So if the Hurricanes beat Braunschweig for a second time, and the two are tied, they would get the fourth and final playoff spot.

Hurricanes WR Weston Carr has 52 catches for 1,185 yards and 15 TDs Photo: Max Seefeld

This means that Hurricanes quarterback Joe Germinerio and his favorite target Weston Carr will be playing to do more than just spoil the race for both Braunschweig and Dresden; The Monarchs are currently in a neck and neck race with the Potsdam Royals for first place while the New Yorker Lions are clambering to catch up to the  Cologne Crocodiles, who are just ahead of them in third with a 4-3 record.

It may seem that the Hurricanes have little hope in taking the seemingly perfect Monarchs to the ground or a resurgent New Yorker Lions squad, but that would be the wrong assumption. Former Azusa Pacific (Div.II) and Penn State (Div.I) WR Weston Carr has absolutely dominated the league. Even the aerially electric Cologne Crocodiles can’t keep up with his 15 TDs and 1,185 yards in just eight games. 

Germinerio has completed 126 of 198 passes for 1,847 yards and 19 touchdowns which means Carr has accounted for 64% of his quarterback’s completions and almost 80% of his touchdown passes.

If Germinerio and Carr’s stats don’t convince you then the score lines should. After an admittedly poor start by the team through the first four games, they have come back with a vengeance. Their first win of the season came in their week five matchup against the Lions in a compelling 34 – 31 victory – their first win against Braunschweig since 2012. This was followed by a convincing win over the Berlin Rebels before a 61 – 48 shootout loss with the Monarchs, which remained a one-score game until the fourth quarter. Finally, they prevailed in a 40 – 35 nail-biter against the Cologne Crocodiles. The team could have so easily been sitting at 4-4, and taken down the two best passing teams in the process. 

For the Hurricanes, the playoff race will not be decided by hypotheticals but by wins. This means that with an explosive offense that can dismantle any defense in the league, they still have a shot. And if they take down both the Lions and Monarchs, they suddenly become legitimate contenders.

No one would have thought that just a few weeks ago.

Watch the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes play the Braunschweig New Yorker Lions on, Sunday, August 22 at 15:00 CET (3 pm, 09:00 am ET).

Daniel Mackenzie is a Press Association graduate who works in journalism and communications in the third sector. Daniel began playing football for the London Warriors and Team Great Britain and has since played across Europe.