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Towers taber første kamp i denne sæson

Af Jens Rørbye

Towers mødte overmagten i form af østrigske Swarco Raiders Tirol, som vandt 45-20 i Super Final 1 på en velbesøgt Gentofte Sportspark.

I kampen viste Raiders styrke i alle kampens facetter. De spillede overbevisende på angrebet, hvor kombinationen af quarterback Sean Shelton, som havde overblik til at benytte sig af alle sine receivere og running back Sandro Platzgummer viste sig at være svær for Towers’ forsvar at stoppe.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Ikke desto mindre spillede Towers’ forsvar en god kamp og formåede at skaffe bolden tilbage til Towers’ angreb via  både en interception og en Raiders fumble.

Towers angreb kæmpede hårdt med midten af Raiders forsvar, som gjorde det svært for Dayton Winn, Anton Witmeur og Junior Konate at finde plads til at løbe med bolden.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Til gengæld havde quarterback Randy Schroeder – og Kasper Skyum, som blev skiftet ind i 3. quarter – succes med at kaste mod sidelinierne, hvor specielt Philip Thue Nielsen og Aske Troen var solide. Når det lykkedes Towers at flytte bolden med en vis regelmæssighed, så var det i luften at det skete.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Towers benyttede lejligheden til at hædre fullback Jannik Lindén, som trak sig tilbage som aktiv spiller i oktober 2017 efter en karriere, som strakte sig over 26 år, heraf syv hos Copenhagen Towers. Stadionspeakeren introducerede Lindén og opremsede en lang liste over Lindéns bedrifter; Han har deltaget i 11 Mermaid Bowls og vundet syv af dem. I hele sin karriere har Jannik blot misset ni kampe. Og han har været udtaget til det danske landshold fem gange. Efter introduktionen have klubben valgt at lade Jannik bære Dannebrog og føre holdet på banen forud for nationalsangen.

Fotograf: Michael Quist

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Inden kampen og i pausen var Towers vært for et arrangement for specielt indbudte gæster, der nød godt af tapas, leveret af klubbens sponsor Ronaldos, og østrigsk hvidvin. Blandt gæsterne var republikken Østrigs ambassadør til kongeriget Danmark, Dr. Maria Rotheiser-Scotti. Ambassadøren forestod lodtrækningen forud for kampen sammen med kampens hoveddommer, Frank Rasmussen, der i weekenden dømte sin kamp nr. 800.

Towers skylder en stor tak til aftenens kampsponsor; KNR Tømrerentreprise for vigtig støtte til afviklingen af kampen. Og som altid en tak til klubbens sponsorer AIRTOX og Ronaldos.

 

Fotograf: Michael Quist

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Efter kampen udpegede DAFF’s sportschef og landstræner, Lars Carlsen og IFAF repræsentant, Thomas Ahlberg kampens spiller fra begge hold. Fra Towers faldt valget på tight end Philip Thue Nielsen, mens running back Sandro Platzgummer blev udnævnt som Raiders’ bedste spiller.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

 

Trods, at kampen endte med et nederlag til at meget godt østrigsk hold, så kan Towers tage meget med fra kampen og det forløb, som har ført klubben til denne kamp. For et år siden var Towers næsten urørlige i den danske Nationalliga, men var alligevel ikke at finde på den europæiske Top-25. Forud for aftenens kamp havde klubben taget en elevatortur til 7. pladsen i Europa.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

 

Ligeledes tegner det lovende for fremtiden, at klubben i Super Final kunne sætte publikumsrekord på den nye Gentofte Sportspark med hele 1.401 tilskuere. Den forholdsvis nyoprettede Towers Fanclub er på blot en enkelt sæson vokset til over 300 fans.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

 

Det giver klubben et godt fundament at arbejde videre på i resten af denne sæson, hvor klubben nu har fuldt fokus på at genvinde det danske mesterskab, såvel som i 2019. Men nu venter i første omgang en sommerpause. Towers skal i kamp på hjemmebane igen, når klubben møder Søllerød Gold Diggers på Gentofte Sportspark fredag d. 24. august kl. 19:00 til den traditionsrige, årlige Friday Night Football-kamp.

Fotograf: Mikkel Bo Rasmussen, 1st. Down Photo

 

Information about Super Final – League of Champions

We are looking forward to welcome Swarco Raiders Tirol, officials and football fans from all over Europe to the Super Final – League of Champions on Saturday.

The game will be played at Gentofte Stadium. Kick off time is 7:30 pm. The gates open at 6 pm.

Entrance fee for the game is DKK 100. Tickets will be sold at the entrance. You can pay in cash or Danish mobile pay. Unfortunately we don’t accept credit card at the entrance or at the stands in the stadium.

We recommend entering the stadium early as we expect a fully booked stadium.

If you can’t make it to the game you can watch it on www.zibraport.dk/daff/live. The game is live streamed as pay per view at the cost of DKK 39.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Århundredets kamp på hjemmebane i Super Final d. 30. juni

Af Jakob Munksgaard

Efter at have slået de norske, engelse og svenske mestrer, vandt Copenhagen Towers Northern European Football League og kvalificerede sig dermed til Super Final, en kamp der skal afgøre hvilket hold der er bedst i Europa.

Fotograf Michael Quist

Det er lykkedes Towers at blive arrangør af kampen og finalen skal derfor spilles på Gentofte Stadion d. 30. juni. Finalen, der har det mundrette navn Super Final – League of Champions, bliver formentlig den største kamp nogensinde i Danmark.

I Super Final skal Towers møde Østrigske Swarco Raiders, der vandt Central European Football League (CEFL). Swarco har i mange år været en stormagt i Europæisk football.

Fotograf Michael Quist

Formand for Towers Jakob Munksgaard er stolt af at kampen skal spilles i Gentofte og udtaler ”Det er fantastisk at det er lykkedes at få så stor en kamp til Danmark og til Gentofte Stadion. Det sætter store krav til organisationen og kræver hjælp fra mange mand, men vi skal nok klare det. Sportsligt har vi et rigtig stærkt hold og vi tror på os selv og hjemmebanen skulle gerne give os en lille fordel. Vi har spillet mange store kampe på Gentofte Stadion og denne her er uden tvivl den største. Vi glæder os til at vise det bedste i Europa frem for danske football fans”.

Fotograf Michael Quist

I lørdags slog Towers Carlstad Crusaders på udebane i en spændende kamp. Crusaders vandt turneringen forige år, så Towers har vist at de kan være med helt i toppen af Europa.

Tidspunktet for kampen er endnu ikke fastlagt. Dette forventes klarlagt i løbet af få dage.

Fotograf Michael Quist

Towers are NEFL champions…!

By Jens Rørbye

Eight-time Swedish champions. Perennial powerhouse. Consistent top-10 team in Europe. Three-time nemesis. The accolades are many, yet the Carlstad Crusaders fell 44-43 to the Towers in the NEFL Championship.

The Towers played a stellar first half and took a 30-16 lead into the break. The third quarter proved more difficult as the Crusaders maintained almost complete control of the ball offensively. They ran several very long drives, which meant that the Towers offense ran only 4-5 offensive plays all quarter.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Two scores in quick succession meant that the teams were tied at 30 at the beginning of the fourth quarter. This set the stage for a finish that was as intense as it was thrilling. Dayton Winn brought the Towers ahead again, but the Crusaders tied the game once more and then took the lead for the first time all game. When the Crusaders missed the PAT after their last touchdown the Towers knew that the momentum was back in our favor. Marching down the field Dayton Winn ran in what appeared to be the winning touchdown, however, a holding call brought back the Towers offense.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

With 29 seconds left on the clock QB Randy Schroeder found U19 WR Jakob Green in the right side of the end zone despite good coverage. Green made the tough over-the-shoulder catch to tie the game again.

With a successful PAT, the game was back in the hands of the defense. Crusaders QB Philip Juhlin threw a few incomplete passes against a prevent defense followed by a desperation heave deep downfield as time ran out. When the pass fell incomplete among of a hoard of Towers defenders, the game was over.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

As much as the game was an offensive masterpiece, with an outstanding performance by the entire unit, the defense played a good and very disciplined game. Defensive coordinator Victor Andersen said: “Despite allowing 43 points our defense felt that it had played a very good game against an exceptionally good opponent.”

On many occasions, the defensive brought the Crusaders to a halt deep on their own half of the field, giving the offense good field position.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Field position was generally an issue for the Crusaders. On kick-offs Jakob Green repeatedly forced touchbacks, while Aske Troen’s punts kept the ball out of the hands of the Crusaders’ import DB, who is dangerous in the return game.

Bringing the NEFL championship to Copenhagen is the culmination of a five-year journey that began, when the Towers won the Danish championship in 2013. When assessing the 2018 season in December 2017, our coaches determined that, to be truly successful in Europe, we would need to score points more consistently. Having RB Dayton Winn return for a second season was the first step of that plan. Signing QB Randy Schroeder was the second.

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Seeing the plan play out was among the things that defensive coordinator Victor Andersen was particularly proud of after the game: “Realizing that we have signed two imports who fit the plan that we laid out in December was a fantastic feeling.”

Team president Jakob Munksgaard was equally excited: “This win proves that we are among the best teams in Europe. The team and coaches have focused on this game all spring and performed when they had to. It was an extraordinary performance by everyone!”

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Scoring recap:

Dayton Winn: 117 yards and 2 rushing TDs. 27 yards and 1 receiving TD
Aske Troen: 46 yards and 1 receiving TD and a 32-yard FG
Lasse Tor: 31 yards and 1 receiving TD
Jakob Green: 116 yards 1 receiving TD
Randy Schroeder: 286 yards and 4 passing TDs

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Fotograf Palle N. Christensen, Towers Media

Towers win second NEFL game in spectacular fashion

The Copenhagen Towers beat the reigning British champions, the Tamworth Phoenix, by a whopping score of 50-7 on Saturday afternoon in front of 517 enthusiastic fans.

Fotograf Michael Quist

The Phoenix surprised the British football community by winning the BAFA championship in 2017 after knocking off the two powerhouse teams of London; The Warriors and the Blitz. Consequently the Towers expected a very physical and close game.

Nonetheless the Towers hit the ground running and never looked back. American running back Dayton Winn was brought back for the 2018 season in order to make a difference in international games. And Winn did make a difference as he scored three touchdowns in the 1st quarter alone enroute to a total of five touchdowns on the day. To keep Winn fresh, running backs Anton Witmeur and Michel ‘Junior’ Konate saw extensive playing time as well.

Quarterback Kasper Skyum started the game and played the majority of the snaps, but Patrick Hargett played a significant number of snaps, too. Both showed impressive accuracy, poise and ability to keep the ball moving.

Fotograf Michael Quist

The Towers’ big and strong receivers, Aske Troen, Lasse Tor, Jesper Hansen and Jakob Green outran and outplayed their coverage and consistently made very difficult catches look easy.

When teams put up exceptional offensive numbers, the big guys up front usually have had a good day at the office. This was certainly the case in this game. End zone views revealed that our running backs had not only freeways, but occasionally what seemed like entire runways, to run through.

Those who kept their eyes on the trenches would also see the offensive linemen dominating and pancaking their opponents in the run game, while also keeping the QBs’ uniforms clean.

Defensively, the Towers played a stellar game. The defensive line, particularly Kristoffer Brun and Mads Marquard, kept the Phoenix’ running game in check all game long and kept them out of the end zone until late in the game.

Furthermore the linebackers kept the British quarterback and running backs contained throughout the game, while the defensive backs were in position with their coverage again and again.

Fotograf Michael Quist

Add some brilliant special teams play and this game might very well have been the best performance of any Towers team over the past 28 years. The kicking game as well as the return game was strong and focused enough to take advantage of every single mistake made by the Phoenix.

But most impressive of all was the discipline that the team showed. It was a credit to the players, who performed according to the game plan, but also the coaching staff that instilled confidence In the entire team, yet kept them grounded.

This means that the Towers have gotten off to the best possible start to the Northern European Football League season after winning the first two of three games. Having beaten the Oslo Vikings and now the Tamworth Phoenix, the Towers have one game left in the NEFL. This game might be the toughest of the tournament as the Swedish champions, the Carlstad Crusaders are a very difficult opponent.

The Towers will travel to Sweden to face the Crusaders on June 9th.

Fotograf Michael Quist

Northern European Football League schedule set

By Jens Rørbye

The Towers will visit the Carlstad Crusaders and the Oslo Vikings, while we host the Tamworth Phoenix in this year’s Northern European Football League.

The NEFL is a tournament of national champions in Northern Europe. This year’s edition is made up of the Tamworth Phoenix (United Kingdom), the Oslo Viking (Norway), the Carlstad Crusaders (Sweden) and the Copenhagen Towers.

The winner of the NEFL will face the winner of the Central European Football League on July 1st for the Super Final title. This year the CEFL will feature the Innsbruck Raiders (Austria), Wroclaw Panthers (Poland) and Prague Black Panthers (Czechia) as well as  Istanbul Rams (Tuerkey), Moscow Patriots (Russia) and Kragujevac Wild Bears (Serbia). Find more on the CEFL here.

It has been nine years since the Vikings last played European competition, so it’s a whole new generation of players that will welcome the Towers to the Norwegian capital. The Tamworth Phoenix are entering their first ever European tournament following their first British championship. The Carlstad Crusaders are a somewhat more familiar opponent as the Towers have faced the eight-time Swedish champions three times in recent years.

The Phoenix, located in Tamworth between Birmingham and Leicester, pulled off close upset wins over the London Warriors in the 2017 BAFA semifinals and over the London Blitz in the Britbowl to earn their NEFL berth.

The small city of Karlstad, on the north coast of lake Vänern, a bit closer to Oslo than Stockholm, is home to the Carlstad Crusaders. The Crusaders are a perennial powerhouse in Swedish football and have won the last eight straight Swedish championships.

The Oslo Vikings survived a nailbiter against the Vålerenga Trolls in the semifinal before beating the Eidsvoll 1814’s in a rematch of the 2016 final.

We hope to see all of the usually loud and rowdy #TowerNation at Towers Field on April 28th at 16:00 for our one NEFL home game against the Phoenix.

This is our full NEFL schedule for the regular season:

Date Day Time Home team Away team
April 14th Saturday 12:00 Vikings Towers
April 28th Saturday 16:00 Towers Phoenix
June 9th Saturday 13:00 Crusaders Towers