Team Sweden will try to recover from a 49-6 shellacking at the hands of the defending champions, Team Canada, when they face Australia’s Team Outback at Mexico City’s Olympic Stadium Wednesday, July 18, in the second round of the 2018 IFAF U19 World Championships.
Sweden is making its third appearance in the IFAF U19 World Championships while this is Australia’s second trip.
Swedish quarterback Dennis Isberg will hopefully have overcome his opening game jitters. Facing relentless pressure from Canada’s front seven, and steady rain in the first half, Isberg had trouble finding his receivers. Not until the second half did he settle down, mounting a scoring drive. He hit Evin Tarborda for a 32 yard pass down to Canada’s three yard line. Running back Saba Jarwalli then punched the ball in to put Sweden on the scoreboard, 35-6 early in the third quarter. The Swedes resorted to the run game which had more success with Jarwalli and Jonathan Gutstafsson gaining positive yardage, especially in the second half.
One of Sweden’s major offensive threats is Michael Cox Jr. who can play both quarterback and receiver. In the game against Canada, with Cox at receiver, Sweden had a hard time getting the ball into his hands. They will be looking to iron out those problems against Team Outback.
In this game, Australian quarterback Kade Dawson will not be facing the same pressure as he did against the United States. He is able to use his legs as well as his arm so the Swedish defense will have to be wary. Linebacker Alan Cooper leads a defense that can play extremely physical football.
Team Australia General Manager Michael Kerr:
The players and coaches are excited about possibility of ranking higher than any other Outback team prior, and are quietly confident of a win today, but at the same time remain focused on the job at hand – beating Sweden. I have had the privilege of watching Coach Chapman and his amazing coaching staff mold these young men into not just elite level football players, but true ambassadors for Gridiron Australia that we can all be proud of.
I am very proud of these boys after their performance against USA and the work they have put in before and after that game. The team are well prepared, focused and believe in themselves. The boys have taken a professional approach to their preparation, which I expect will translate to a win today.