The 5-6 Allgäu Comets head to Marburg to take on the 7-5 Marburg Mercenaries, Europe #17, Sunday, August 25 in a game which has taken on huge importance as the German Football League season hits the home stretch.
The Comets won the first game between the two teams, 22-19.
The Mercenaries are coming off a huge 52-0 shellacking of the Munich Cowboys, which was a badly needed win for Marburg. They had suffered two straight losses including the 22-19 decision to the Comets as well as a 42-36 loss to Europe’s number one team, the Schwabisch Hall Unicorns. However,they scored the most points of any team against the Unicorns this year. They had won six straight going into that game. They had downed the Ingolstadt Dukes 40-33 and the Kirchdorf Wildcats 41-28. They put a walloping on the Stuttgart Scorpions right before the break, beating them 52-14 behind a 377 yards and 5 TD passing game from QB Jake Sullivan. They defeated the Munich Cowboys the week before 41-29 and before that downed the Ingolstadt Dukes 43-14 after notching their first win of the season the week before. It was a big one as they outdueled the Wildcats 55-49. They had dropped their first three games of the year in 2019, losing 52-9 to the defending champion Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns, then 30-21 to the Stuttgart Scorpions and finally 20-14 to the Frankfurt Universe.
Sullivan is playing on a high level and leads the league in passing yardage and average yards per game having thrown for 4,037 yards in 12 games, an average of 336.4 yards a game,. Hendrik Schwarz is his leading receiver with 1,047 yards receiving on 59 receptions. He is averaging 17.7 yards a catch (2nd in GFL) and 87.2 yards a game. Luke Wildung has 55 receptions for 603 yards while Marvin Rutsch has caught 91 passes for 809 yards. Running back Triston McCathem has 754 yards rushing (5th in average with 62.8/game) for the year but he also has 580 yards receiving.
The Comets are on a roll and downed the Kirchdorf Wildcats last week 21-6 for their fourth straight win. They had surprised Marburg the week before 22-19 with the defense playing inspired football when they needed to. Twice Allgäu stopped the Mercenaries on the five yard line only surrendering late in the game. This was an important win as it put the Comets within striking distance of fourth place and a playoff spot still. Allgau had defeated Stuttgart 16-12 and 40-21 in a back-to-back series. The Comets had fallen 31-21 to the Ingolstadt Dukes in their last game before the home and home series with Stuttgart and were in danger of dropping into the basement of the division.
The Comets had notched their first win of the 2019 season when they downed Ingolstadt 28-26 at home in Kempten. However, Allgäu dropped two in a row after that. They first lost a close one to the Kirchdorf Wildcats 27-25 and then were beaten 34-7 by the Frankfurt Universe. The Cometswere blanked in the opening game of the season 20-0 by the Universe and then dropped two in a row to the Munich Cowboys, 31-16 and 21-18.
Comets quarterback Raleigh Yeldell, in his fifth start, only threw for 90 yards against Kirchdorf but running back Lennies McFerren made up for it again, rushing for 112 yards and a touchdown. McFerren is now the third leading rusher in the league with 777 yards and has rushed for 337 yards in his last the games. In the last game against Marburg, the Comets rushed for 210 yards as a team while holding Marburg to just 43. That may be the key today as long as the secondary can keep the Marburg receivers out of the end zone.
However, the Mercenaries are playing at home where they have only lost twice this year, to Frankfurt early in the season, and to the Unicorns, who they put a scare into.