Sweden: Örebro Black Knights rally to beat Stcokholm Mean Machines on last second TD

The 4-4 Örebro Black Knights secured second place and home field advantage in the Swedish playoffs by coming from behind late and beating the 3-4 Stockholm Mean Machines 40-35 Friday night in Stockholm.

Behind 222 yards rushing and two touchdowns by new running back Gennadiy “Gena” Adams and a last second touchdown by Hjalmar Gertsson, the Black Knights won their biggest game of the season.

With two wins over the third place Mean Machines this year, Örebro will finish second ahead of Stockholm and have the home date in the Swedish semifinals.

In addition to Adams performance, Örebro quarterback Raleigh Yeldell III threw for 119 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for 56 yards and another two touchdowns. Gertsson caught three passes for 100 yards and two touchdowns.

Stockholm quarterback Anders Hermodsson completed 19 of 36 passes for 283 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for 29 yards and a touchdown. Receiver Matt Retzlaff caught six passes for 161 yards and two touchdowns while the league’s leading running back Emil Knutsson rushed for 49 yards and a touchdown.

Örebro opened the scoring on the first drive as Yeldell scored on a four yard run.

Hermodsson answered early in the second quarter with a touchdown run of his own, carrying the ball in from 14 yards out to give Stockholm a 7-6 lead.

Adams capped a 74 yard, 10 play drive on the very next Örebro series with a three yard plunge and Lind scored the two-point conversion to make it 14-7.

Photo: Stefan Akander

Knutsson tied it up with two minutes left in the half and then Retzlaff hauled in a 55 yard scoring pass from Hermodsson with almost no time left in the half to give the mean Machines a 21-14 lead at the break.

Stockholm came out in the second half and increased the lead to 27-14 with another Retzlaff touchdown, this time on an eight yard pass reception with four minutes left in the third quarter.

Adams, now feeling comfortable, went on a rampage rushing for 147 yards in the last 16 minutes of the game. First, he scampered 39 yards to close the gap to 27-21. Then early in the fourth quarter he rushed three times for 52 yards in setting up Yeldell for the equalizing touchdown.

With the score tied 27-27, Yeldell connected with Gertsson on a 61 yard touchdown strike with four minutes left in the game to give the Black Knights the lead again, 34-27.

Hermodsson wasn’t finished. Taking the ball over with four minutes left, he marched the Mean Machines on a nine-play, 79 yard drive which ended with a Scanella touchdown on a Retzlaff end zone fumble. With just over 50 seconds left in the game, Retzlaff caught the two-point conversion pass to give Stockholm a 35-34 lead.

Taking the ball over with 54 seconds remaining, Örebro went to work. Two Adams runs totaling 47 yards placed the ball on the Stockholm 25 yard line. Two plays later Yeldell hit Gertsson again, this time from 15 yards out with 12 seconds left in the game  giving the Black Knights a 40-35 lead they would not relinquish.

Hermodsson’s last second pass attempt to Retzlaff went incomplete and for the second time this season, Örebro came out come-from-behind winners over the Mean Machines.

With the victory, the Black Knights finish second overall in the Swedish Superserien and now prepare for the semifinals.

Stockholm has one game remaining against the Uppsala 86ers. A win secures third place but a loss by more than 20 points would drop them to fourth and a semifinal date against the Carlstad Crusaders. 


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