These two teams met in late June in Braunschweig, with Braunschweig pulling out a thrilling 35-28 win, capitalizing on key turnovers by the Invaders.
That was the first and only loss of the year by the upstart Invaders and it was on the road. They will no doubt be looking to satisfy their fans today.
Hildesheim got by the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes last week 21-7 in a surprisingly muted performance for their ninth win of the season. The Invaders had beaten the Berlin Rebels 36-30 the week before and before that downed the Hurricanes 27-7. Hildesheim came out of the gate fast with six straight wins before being tripped up by the Lions. They had entered that game after their sixth consecutive win,, a 31-27 come-from-behind victory over the Monarchs. They had preceded that with a 46-10 drubbing of the Dusseldorf Panther.
Hildesheim is the most improved team in the league and won their four previous games by one-sided scores beating the Potsdam Royals 50-28, taking care of the Panther 49-17, downing the Cologne Crocodiles 31-14 and then defeating the Berlin Rebels 56-41.
Invaders quarterback Casey Therriault, in his first season back in the GFL in two years is in prime form throwing for 2,854 yards and a 34 touchdowns while rushing for 362 yards and four touchdowns. Sean Richard is the team’s leading rusher with 409 yards but is now being used mainly as a wide receiver. Phillip Gamble is starting at RB and picked up 372 yards rushing and four touchdowns. Wide receivers Nathaniel Morris (1,055 yds, 10 TDs) s Jaleel Awini (665 yds, 7 TDs),and Anthony Dablé-Wolf (653 yds, 13 TDs) still make up the most explosive set of receivers in the GFL. The Invaders are the second leading rushing team in the GFL, behind Braunschweig.
The way Hildesheim has been playing, they will match up well against the Lions. They will be playing at home and if their defense can keep Braunschweig in check they could pull off the upset.
Braunschweig, who are unbeaten and in first in the GFL North, are the only team to defeat the Invaders this year.
The Lions have has won their 10 opening games and last week took care of the Dresden Monarchs 19-3. The week before they had no trouble downing the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes 49-21 and the week before, the Berlin Rebels 34-9. They had a thrilling 35-28 win over the previously unbeaten Invaders just before the break. They had downed the Cologne Crocodiles in a back-to-back series, 23-6 and 45-7, and then took care of the Rebels, the only team that defeated them in the regular season last year. Early in June, the Lions won a thriller, beating the previously unbeaten Dresden Monarchs 34-31 and also walked all over the Potsdam Royals, 46-7.
The Lions offense has been effective with QB Brandon Connette throwing for just 1,501 yards in the 10 games. The backfield duo of Chris McClendon (914 yds) and David McCants (339 yds) along with Connette (551 yds) give the Lions the best rushing attack in the GFL averaging 200.1 yards a game. Last week against Dresden, McClendon rushed for 142 yards and and 1 TD. Wide receivers Nicolai Schumann (345 yds), Justus Hotz (247 yds) and Christian Bollmann with 306 yards receiving lead the team.
Braunschweig has one of the top three defenses in the GFL and has only allowed opponents an average of 229.4 yards of offense a game.