LIVESTREAM: Swedish Semifinal – Uppsala 86ers @Carlstad Crusaders, Sat. June 29, 5p CEDT (11a EDT)

The Carlstad Crusaders (4-2) will begin the battle to retake their Swedish crown as they face the Uppsala 86ers in the Swedish semifinals today, Saturday,June 29 at Tingvall field in Karlstad.

The Crusaders have beaten Uppsala twice this year, 33-7 and 50-6. This is the fourth year in a row that Carlstad and the 86ers have met in the semifinals and each game has been close.

The Crusaders suffered a disappointing 37-14 loss to the Stockholm Mean Machines to finish the regular season.after surging since losing the opening game of the season to Stockholm. They beat Orebro 46-0 and 27-13 and Uppsala 33-7  and 50-6. Part of this is due to the rushing attack led by running back Emil Knutsson. In his last three games, against Stockholm, Uppsala and the Black Knights he rushed for 421 yards giving him a total of 561 in six games along with four touchdowns. With the return of Phil Juhlin, head coach BD Kennedy has the luxury of having two excellent quarterbacks in Juhlin and Shazzon Mumphrey. The two have been rotating for the past two games and they have both looked solid. Mumphrey has now thrown for 873 yards and 12 TDs while Juhlin has 197 yards passing and two touchdowns. However, they are both dangerous as receivers and Uppsala may well see some unorthodox formations in today’s game. Carlstad’s leading receiver has been Kevin Borzsei who has 473  yards receiving to top the league.

The 86ers wound up the regular season losing to Carlstad 50-6 in a game the entire team has no doubt put out of their minds.

Before then, Uppsala had lost twice to the Stockholm Mean Machines, 20-0 and 34-6 and then defeated the Orebro Black Knights 25-6.

The 86ers lost their starting quarterback in the opening game and since then, wide receiver turned quarterback Gustav Bowall, has been pressed into service. He has only thrown for 621 yards and five touchdowns but he has shown tons of development. However, in the last loss to Carlstad, the 86ers only managed to produce -28 yards rushing.

Uppsala’s Canadian defensive back Ryan Hector plays both ways while also returning kicks and can be an all-round weapon. He was stymied in the final game of the year though. In the last three games prior to that against Stockholm and Orebro, he has had 265 all purpose yards while recording 7.5 tackles. Linebacker Luis Rosado, led the team with 41 tackles while Australian defensive end Sam Matautia had 33.

Running back Johannes Nilsson was held to zero yards rushing in the final loss to Carlstad and must find his game for the 86ers to have any kind of hope.

On paper,, Carlstad, playing at home, would have to be overwhelming favorites. But this is the playoffs.

Watch the game live here. Uppsala 86ers @Carlstad Crusaders, Sat. June 29, 5p CEDT (11a EDT)

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