The undefeated Bolzano Giants (6-0) will head to Milan, Italy to face arch rivals and reigning Italian champions, the Milano Seamen (6-1) in a battle for first place overall in Italy’s Div. 1, Saturday, May 18.
The last time these two teams faced each other was in the 2018 Italian Bowl when the Seamen won the title, beating Bolzano 28-14.
The Seamen are coming off a tough 50-23 loss to Austria’s Swarco Raiders in Central European Football League play.
Nevertheless, Milano has looked impressive in Italy, in their victories over the Bergamo Lions, Bologna Warriors and Ancona Dolphins (29-6) before they were unceremoniously dumped by Parma earlier in April, 22-19. They rebounded though with a huge 34-28 last second win over the Firenze Guelfi. Since then they easily blanked the Lazio Ducks 51-0 and then beaten a surprisingly tough Torinao Giaguari 36-27.
So far in the Italian league, the Seamen have built a record of 6-1 behind an explosive offense. QB Luke Zahradka leads the country in passing having thrown for 1,635 yards and a league-best 25 TDs. His favorite targets have been Stefano Di Tunisi (543 yds) and Xavier Mitchell (480 yds), who are 3rd and 4th in the league in receiving yards.
Bolzano sit atop the standings in Italy after having opened the season with six straight wins, including a thrilling 36-32 victory over the Firenze Guelfi. First the Giants came out 41-7 winners over the Torino Giaguari and then defeated Bergamo 28-24 and the Parma Panthers 20-6. The Giants disposed of the Bologna Warriors 33-6 and in their last outing downed the Ancona Dolphins 41-29.
The Giants are second in Italy in offense producing 356 yards per game, and second in defense allowing 17.3 points a game. Milano averages 35.3 points a game, which tops the league and allow a league-low 12.7 points a game.
Giants QB, Austin Gahafer is the second leading passer in Italy averaging 230.7 yards passing a game, while his favorite target, Mark Simone is the runaway receiving leader averaging 119.8 yards per game, more than 30 yards per game ahead of the second leading receiver.
This is definitely the game to watch this weekend.