Germany: Potsdam Royals edge closer to playoffs with win over Kiel Baltic Hurricanes

The Potsdam Royals (6-7) moved closer to clinching a playoff berth in their first season in the German Football League by downing the Kiel Baltic Hurricanes (4-8-1) 38-14 on the road at Kilia Stadion in Kiel.

Behind a monster 226 yard rushing game by German Football League rushing leader, Tyvis Smith, the Royals came out swinging early, building a 19-7 halftime lead and then letting the defense do the rest.

The Royals had lost four of their last five games going into this contest and badly needed a win to stay in contention for post season play.

Royals quarterback Austin Gahafer was back on track after a couple of sub-par performances, throwing for 245 yards and four touchdowns. Danish WR Frederik Myrup Nielsen led all receivers with seven receptions for 121 yards and a touchdown while David Saul hauled in four passes for 77 yards and another two touchdowns. Enrico Stiegemann added a touchdown as well.

For Kiel, quarterback  Lenorris Footman  completed 13 of 32 passes for 226 yards and two touchdowns with Kwame Ofori gaining 91 yards on four catches while scoring a touchdown. The Hurricanes other touchdown came from Benedikt Englmann who had two catches for 47 yards.

Myrup-Nielsen scored on a 51 yard pass from Gahafer on the Royals first drive and accounted for the only scoring in the first quarter.

Saul added to the lead early in the second quarter with a 31 yard touchdown reception from Gahafer putting Potsdam out in front 12-0.

With six minutes left in the first half, Footman avenged an earlier interception by finding a hole and scampering 53 yards to put Kiel on the scoreboard, trailing only 12-7.

Gahafer restored the 12 point advantage two minutes later, connecting with Saul again, this time from 39 yards out to give Potsdam a 19-7 lead which they carried into the half.

The Hurricanes came out firing to start the second half and Footman capped a 57 yard drive with a 24 yard scoring pass to Englmann and suddenly the gap was only five points, 19-14.

Tyvis Smith made his presence known two possessions later racing 73 yards to extend the lead to 25-14.

The Potsdam defense then managed to keep the Hurricanes under control while the offense scored twice more on Stieglmann’s second touchdown reception of the day late in the third and then Saul’s second score on an 11 yard run.

The Hurricanes managed to reach the red zone twice in the final quarter but came away empty handed both times.

Potsdam has one game remaining against the Cologne Crocodiles who sit right behind them in the standings in fifth place. A win in that game qualifies the Royals for the playoffs. Should Cologne win, they would move on to finish fourth and make the playoffs. The loss drops Kiel out of the playoff picture for the first time since 2006.


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