LIVESTREAM Spain: Badalona Dracs @ Zaragoza Hurricanes, March 5, 12:00 CET (12 noon, 6 am ET)

For the first time in 2023 the Badalona Dracs won’t have to scheme for another new opponent. Instead, the second half of their season kicks off in Zaragoza against the Hurricanes, who they beat 13-0 in Badalona back on January 13.

The two teams will square off at noon on March 5 in Zaragoza with the Hurricanes hoping to avenge their first defeat of the 2023 campaign while the Dracs hope to sweep the season series and pick up their fifth win in the process.

“It’s a little easier [to play Zaragoza] now because we have film from the first time we played them,” Pep Tricas said.

Added offensive coordinator Xavi Gonzalo:

“Now we can adjust a bit more to their alignment and formations. We understand a bit more about what they want to do on defense and how we can take advantage of certain things.”

Watch the game live here. Badalona Dracs @ Zaragoza Hurricanes, March 5, 12:00 CET (12 noon, 6 am ET)

Following the Dracs week 1 win they have gone on to beat L’Hospitalet 27-7, Valencia 50-14 and Mallorca 17-6 and now sit at the top of the Eastern Conference in the Liga Nacional de Fútbol Americano (LNFA) Serie A. The Hurricanes (2-3), meanwhile, occupy fourth place in the Eastern Conference after picking up back-to-back wins following a three-game losing skid to begin the season.

Zaragoza will be without a true quarterback on Sunday after signal caller Ricardo Yereth fell victim to a leg injury. Whoever will play under center this weekend will still have plenty of weapons to connect with, starting with wide receivers Aaron David and Luis Sanchez. Defensive lineman Prince Bafhoh gives the Hurricanes a presence along its defensive line.

The Dracs’ game plan begins with shutting down the Hurricanes’ ground game and dialing up the pressure on Martinez. If the visitors defensive line can wreak havoc, and generate a few turnovers, it could lead to a frustrating day for Zaragoza.

“[Forcing turnovers] is something we train every week,” Yanis El Alami said. “To go for the ball, force an interception and go recover a fumble when someone forces the ball out. That then works in the game, so we are happy for that, but we know we need to get the ball back to our offense even more.”

Badalona will be without American wide receiver Isaiah Woods this weekend, who is still recovering from an injury he picked up in the Dracs’ win against Mallorca two weeks ago. While a blow to Badalona’s attack, quarterback Kevin Doyle still won’t lack options to target on offense, whether it’s Ivan Caballero out wide or Raul Cernuda at tight end.

Both teams enter Sunday with much higher levels of natural chemistry, a byproduct of nearly two months of practices and half-a-season’s worth of games. Although small, it’s something players on the Dracs have picked up on.

“[The defense] is even more complementary now,” El Alami said. “We know how each other plays and we can adapt better to every game plan. I think it will work even better in the second part of the season.”

While the Hurricanes hope to build off recent momentum and pick up a third-consecutive victory, the Dracs would love to use Sunday as a springboard to continue building the confidence and momentum needed to complete an undefeated season. If one thing’s for sure, they aren’t overlooking the hosts.

“They’re a good team,” El Alami said. “We don’t underestimate anyone and we have worked a lot for this game and for the rest of the season. The objective is to get to 5-0 after this week.”

Watch the game live here. Badalona Dracs @ Zaragoza Hurricanes, March 5, 12:00 CET (12 noon, 6 am ET)