The Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns wasted not time assuring the German American football community that they intend to defend their 2017 title as they thoroughly demolished the Munich Cowboys 48-7 at Optima Sportpark in Schwäbisch Hall in their opening game of the German Football League.
The Unicorns racked up 483 yards of offense, scoring on four of their first five possessions to surge out to a 41-0 halftime lead.
Munich was able to enter the Unicorns territory once in the first half, late in the second quarter, only to watch as a fumble on the Schwäbisch Hall six yard line was returned 87 yards for a back-breaking touchdown. The Cowboys avoided the shutout with less than a minute to play in the game.
Unicorns quarterback Marco Ehrenfried completed 14 of 21 passes for 328 yards and two touchdowns and scored another one himself. Wide receiver Tyler Rutenbeck, the third leading receiver in the GFL in 2017, caught five passes for 204 yards and two touchdowns. Running back Jerome Manyema rushed for 59 yards and two touchdowns while Maurice Schüle added 58 yards rushing and a touchdown. Linebacker Nick Alfieri scored on a fumble return and Tim Stadelmayer kicked six extra points.
The Cowboys lone touchdown came on a Trenton Miller to Markus Gärtner eight yard pass .
Trenton Miller threw for 194 yards and a touchdown for the Cowboys but was sacked four times and hurried for most of the game.
Rutenbeck opened the scoring on a 61 yard pass from Ehrenfried and Schwäbisch Hall kept the pressure on after that with Ehrenfried, Manyema (2) and Rutenbeck again scoring to roll out to a 34-0 lead. Then, Alfieri dashed Munich’s hopes of a first half score scooping up an Alexander Funk fumble and racing 87 yards for a touchdown with 12 seconds left.
Schüle scored the Unicorns final touchdown midway through the third quarter and then the defense held Munich at bay until Miller’s late touchdown pass to Gärtner .
The Unicorns dominance in the first half was so overwhelming that Munich only crossed their own 31 yard line once in eight possessions before halftime.
Next up for Schwäbisch Hall are the Allgau Comets on May 5 while the Cowboys are idle until May 20 when they take on the Marburg Mercenaries.