Swarco Raiders kings of Europe, down Dacia Vienna Vikings for ECTC crown

The Swarco Raiders delighted a hometown crowd  of over 5,000 in Innsbruck, Austria with a convincing 35-10 win over the Dacia Vienna Vikings to capture the first annual European Club Team Competition/Central European Football League combined title.

In this inaugural tournament, all the championship teams from throughout Europe, including Germany, were invited to participate. Swarco emerged on top after 13 teams from 11 different countries started the tournament two months ago.

The Raiders defeated Swiss champions, the Calanda Broncos 46-42 in the CEFL final while Vienna beat both Denmark’s Triangle Razorbacks and the Badalona Dracs from Spain in the ECTC to qualify.

In sweltering 32 degree (90 F) heat, the Raiders left no doubt jumping out to a 28-3 halftime lead and then relied on their defense to cruise to the win.

Quarterback Sean Shelton threw two touchdown passes and ran two more in himself while wide receiver Adrian Platzgummer caught both touchdown passes and running back Tobias Bonatti ran another one in. Arno Schwarz kicked all five extra points.

For Dacia Vienna, running back Andrew Spencer scored a touchdown while Amadeus Kappel kicked a 40 yard field goal and the extra point.

Swarco RB Tobias Bonatti Photo: Markus Stieg, Sportpics.media

The Raiders took control of the game on the very first possession with Shelton marching the team from their own 40 yard line and then handing off to Bonatti who sprinted straight up the middle for a 20 yard touchdown to open the scoring.

Dacia Vienna quarterback Austin Herink could not kick his offense into gear and the Raiders took over again after a Vikings punt. This time Shelton capped a drive by calling his own number from the two yard line and battling his way in to widen the lead to 14-0 late in the first quarter.

The Vikings offense stalled again to start off the second quarter and on the next Swarco series, Shelton connected with Platzgummer for a 27 yard touchdown to give the Raiders a 21-0 lead midway through the second quarter. Dacia Vienna finally got on the scoreboard with just over three minutes left in the half when Amadeus Kappel kicked a 40 yard field goal but Swarco added a fourth touchdown before the break. Shelton looped a ball right into the hands of Platzgummer in stride down the sideline and he squeezed into the end zone for his second touchdown of the game and the Raiders took a 28-3 lead as the half ended.

Swarco put the game out of reach early in the second half as Shelton finished off another textbook drive with his second touchdown of the game, finding a gap in the middle and shooting through for a 20 yard touchdown run making it 35-3.

Spencer finally found the end zone for Vienna, hauling in a 30 yard strike from Herink with four minutes remaining in the game to make the final score 35-10.

Swarco head coach Shuan Fatah:

“Obviously it was very exciting for our program to win the first ECTC Championship. It was a long and hard fought road but our team showed a lot of resilience and poise and won this trophy deservingly. I‘m very proud of my team, the coaches and the staff, who tirelessly worked many, many hours to accomplish this extraordinary success.“

Check out the game highlights here.

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