Finland’s Maple League had an exciting week 11. The Helsinki Roosters beat the Porvoon Butchers in unusual comeback fashion. The Wasa Royals outlasted the Hämeenlinna Huskies in a back and forth fight. The Tampere Saints exploded on offense and demolished the Seinäjoki Crocodiles. Here are the short versions of what happened in each Maple League game this week.
Helsinki Roosters @ Porvoon Butchers 35-21
This game started as a defensive struggle for both teams. The Butchers were the first team to score in the first quarter with a 3-play drive capped off by a 50 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Danny Farley to receiver Daniel Luoma. The Butchers led 7-0 after the first quarter. The second quarter is where this game took a turn in favor of the Roosters. A fumble by the Roosters set the Butchers up for their second touchdown to make the score 14-0 in the beginning of the second quarter. That is the last time the Butchers led this game as the Roosters scored 35 unanswered points before the Butchers scored late in the fourth quarter to make the final score 35-21.
Jaycen Taylor carried the load for the Roosters in the run game, rushing for 196 yards and 2 touchdowns (55yd, 2 yd). Wide Receiver Alexander Wasiljeff was the star of the game with 5 catches for 138 yards and 3 touchdowns. Wasiljeff had touchdown catches of 43, 20, and 45 yards against the Butchers defense. Linebacker Ilya Redin led the Roosters defense with 6.5 tackles, 2 sacks, and an interception.
Rickey Stevens had another great game on the ground with 174 rushing yards and one touchdown for the Butchers. Wide Receiver Daniel Luoma led all receivers with 3 catches for 98 yards and 1 touchdown. Linebacker Sebastian Karbin had 8 tackles for the Butchers.
KEY PLAYER STATS
QB Brandon Connette – 16/31, 231 yds, 3 td
RB Jaycen Taylor – 19 att, 196 yds, 2 td
WR Alexander Wasiljeff – 5 rec, 138 yds, 3 td
WR Timmy Thomas – 7 rec, 58 yds
LB Santtu Äyräväinen – 6.5 tkls, 0.5 sack
DB Viljo Lempinen – 6 tkls, 2 pbu
LB Ilya Redin – 6.5 tkls, 3 tfl, 2 sacks, 1 int
QB Daniel Farley – 12/29, 169 yards, 1 td, 2 int
RB Rickey Stevens – 27 att, 174 yds, 1 td
WR Daniel Luoma – 3 rec, 98 yds, 1 td
LB Sebastian Karbin – 8 tkls
DB Niko Roiko – 6 tkls, 1 pbu
LB Troy Roach – 4 tkls, 1 ff
Wasa Royals @ Hämeenlinna Huskies 27-24
In this game, all 48 minutes were needed to decide the winner. The Royals started the scoring with a 34-yard field goal by Spencer Cutlan. After that both teams took turns with big plays contributing to six different lead changes. The Huskies took their first lead 8-3 in the first thanks to a Roman Runner 84-yard catch and run for a score. The Royals responded with a RJ Long 48-yard catch for a touchdown to make the score 10-8 after one quarter. The second quarter continued the back and forth as the Huskies put together a 12 play, 9-minute drive capped off by a 1-yard touchdown run by Arkadi Meerschout to take the lead 16-10. Not to be outdone, the Royals Justin Sottilare hooked up with Spencer Cutlan for a 40 yard pass and the Royals were ahead 17-16. With 43 seconds left in the half the Huskies recorded a safety to take the lead back at 18-17 to end the first half. The scoring would cease in the third quarter as both teams had trouble finishing drives against good defense. Early in the fourth quarter, RJ Long hauled in another 48 yard touchdown catch to put the Royals ahead 25-18. The Huskies of course responded later in the quarter with an 82-yard scoring drive, finished by a 7-yard catch from Stan Bedwell to Roman Runner. The Huskies 2 point try was unsuccessful so the Royals remained with the lead, 25-24. The Huskies were not able to score anymore and the Royals added a safety at the end of the game to win 27-24. specialist like he had never left. This game was exciting from beginning to end, and the score reflects the game played between two good teams.
KEY PLAYER STATS
QB Justin Sottilare – 19/32, 375 yds, 3 td, 2 int
RB Tom Suoste – 9 att, 34 yds
WR RJ Long – 7 rec, 210 yds, 2 td
WR Spencer Cutlan – 5 rec, 91 yds, 1 td
LB Stacey Thomas – 4 tkls, 2 tfl
LB Chris Young – 5.5 tkls, 1.5 tfl
DB Nicholas Peterson – 4 tkls, 1.5 tfl
DL Efe Evwaraye – 3 tkls
DB Rufail Khalifa – 2 tkls, 1 pbu
QB Stan Bedwell – 18/35, 212 yds, 2 tds
RB Arkadi Meerschout – 11 att, 34 yds, 1 td
WR Roman Runner – 5 rec, 164 yds, 2 td
DB Niko Lester – 4 tkls, 1 pbu
LB David Izinyon – 5.5 tkls, 0.5 tfl
DB Mikko Isokaanta – 2 tkls, 1 pbu, 1 int
Seinäjoki Crocodiles @ Tampere Saints 14-49
The Seinäjoki Crocodiles jumped out to an early 14-0 lead against the Tampere Saints. The Saints responded with an onslaught of 49 points of their own to make an expectedly close game a blowout. Saints quarterback Raleigh Yeldell had a career day through the air with 5 touchdowns. Receivers Henri Laine and Ilari Laine both hauled in 2 touchdowns. Runningback Juzz Tiny added 86 yards and a touchdown to give the Saints a balanced attack in this game.
The Crocodiles just didn’t have the offensive firepower to compete in this game. With quarterback Brett Arrivey being replaced due to injury, the offense never got anything going after the two, big touchdown passes early in the game. Quarterback Marco Bonacci was responsible for 4 interceptions in this game while only completing 9 of 24 pass attempts. Renaldas Macevicius led the Crocodiles defense with 5.5 tackles and a forced fumble.
KEY PLAYER STATS
QB Marco Bonacci – 9/24, 171 yds, 2 td, 4 int
WR Anthony Brooks – 5 rec, 59 yds/ 9 att, 33 yds
WR P Raatikainen – 2 rec, 51 yds, 1 td
DB DJ Washington – 4.5 tkls
LB J-P Koivumäki – 4.5 tkls, 2 tfl
LB Renaldas Macevicius – 5.5 tkls, 1 ff
DB Tuomas Leinonen – 5.5 tkls, 4 pbu
QB Raleigh Yeldell – 17/26, 209 yds, 5 tds/ 9 att, 76 yds
RB Juzz Tiny – 5 att, 86 yds, 1 td
RB Tuukka Lehtonen – 16 att, 54 yds
WR Henri Laine – 6 rec, 72 yds, 2 tds
WR Ilari Laine – 6 rec, 83 yds, 2 tds
LB Tony Ballon – 4.5 tkls, 2 tfl
DB Tobias Fuchs – 2 tkls, 4 pbu, 1 int
DB Mike Williams – 3.5 tkls
PERFECT PERVIS VIEW
This was an interesting week for the Maple League. Despite the loss, the Porvoon Butchers put up a good fight against the Helsinki Roosters and proved they can compete for a championship later this year. The Huskies and Royals game had a playoff vibe regarding the game itself and the implications. The Huskies found out in this matchup what it will take for them to win in the playoffs since they will most likely see the Royals or Roosters in the playoffs. The Tampere Saints played great in a game that was for pride and season rankings only. If they can use this week’s success in the future they will be able to play spoiler and end their season on a good note. Overall, this was a good week for the Maple League and looks to make for a very intriguing playoff picture in a few weeks.