Stockholm Mean Machines stretch home unbeaten streak to 18 with win over Carlstad Crusaders

This past weekend, the Carlstad Crusaders traveled to Stockholm to take on the Mean Machines as Sweden’s Superserien heads into the home stretch. Going into the game, Stockholm had a 17-game home winning streak on the line.

Due to many key injuries on the visiting side, the Crusaders would have a tough test ahead of them facing Sweden’s top team. While Carlstad fought hard, they were not able to hold out enough as Stockholm captured a comfortable 33-6 win clinching their 18th consecutive home victory.

The biggest absence for Carlstad would be their two quarterbacks. In their place, running back Hunter Belzo was enlisted to run the offense. After missing a field goal on their opening drive, the Crusaders would get the ball back and found the scoreboard first as Belzo gave them a 6-0 lead.

Stockholm Mean Machines QB Mark Pappas Photo: Cecilia Håkansson

After a great start from a team that has a running back captaining their offense, the Crusaders then struggled offensively, and that was the last time they would find the end zone.

On the ensuing drives, Stockholm would only need nine offensive plays to score two touchdowns and take a 14-6 lead. Running back Lukas Sjöström scored the first one and the electric connection between Mark Pappas and Anton Blomgren would give them the eight-point lead.

Carlstad’s offensive struggles would not end there as Belzo threw two interceptions on back-to-back drives to end the half. Mean Machines defensive back Karl Berg would take one of them back for a touchdown. On the next drive Sixten Motivala’s interception would set up a Matthew Retzlaff touchdown before the half. Giving the Mean Machines a 26-6 lead.

Photo: Cecilia Håkansson

After Stockholm came out with a run-heavy gameplan to start the second half, Pappas found the endzone using his legs for his first rushing touchdown of the 2023 Superserien season. This would be the last points of the game for either team, making the final score of 33-6

After their 18th straight win at home, Stockholm remains undefeated heading into their final regular season game against the Tyresö Royal Crowns. On the other side, the Crusaders have now lost two straight games and will look to regain some momentum before playoffs in their last match against the Örebro Black Knights.

In other action, the Tyresö Royal Crowns downed the Örebro Black Knights 37-14.

Noah Costantino is a student and football player at Baldwin Wallace University in Cleveland, Ohio. Fueled by his love for the game he looks to continue his knowledge of football at an international level. He is majoring in Communications with a