SUNDAY, JUNE 27, 2010 – STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN- The Canadian National Women’s Team has won their first test at the inaugural game of the IFAF Women’s World Championship. The final score of the game agains Sweden was 12-6.
Courtesy of IFAF
SUNDAY, JUNE 27, 2010 – STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN – The Canadian American Football team won a hard fought game against the heavy underdogs Sweden at the Zinkensdamms IP Stadium in Stockholm during the second game of the IFAF Women’s World Championship on Sunday, June 27.
The offenses fought for every inch as both sides came up against tough defenses with the Team MVPs coming from defensive performances. The Swedish defense was led by Team Sweden MVP linebacker Pillan Plass, who recorded nine tackles for loss of 11 yards during the contest and Team Canada MVP Jenn De Guise had 5 tackles and returned an interception 19 yards for what would prove to be the game winning touchdown.
“We struggled a little bit on offense today,” said Canadian head coach Larry Harlow. “But our defense came up big for us. They had a big day today, and hats off to Sweden, because they really stepped up and played us tough.”
After a scoreless first quarter, Canada got the ball moving in the second quarter with the legs of running back Julie Paetsch who would continue to run the ball effectively throughout the game collecting a game high 60 yards and scored the only offensive touchdown of the game in the second quarter to give Canada a 6-0 lead after a missed extra point.
Canada kept the momentum rolling as Patricia Eko-Davis came up with a fumble recovery on the kickoff return giving the ball back to Canada with great field position on Sweden’s 21-yard line.
Sweden defense, led by Plass, made big plays as they forced quarterback Saadia Ashraf out of the pocket and was nearly intercepted by Nadja Westerlund-Rebo as they held Canada to no points on the drive with a missed a 22-yard field goal attempt kicker Terri Shannon.
Getting the ball back with less than two minutes remaining in the half, it looked like Sweden would finally get the ball moving as quarterback Martina Karlsson connected with Erika Hinders crossing midfield with a gain of 12 yards. But Canada’s defense tighten up, which was the story of the game, with back to back tackles for losses forcing Sweden to punt as Canada held a 6-0 lead after two quarters.
The second half it was the same story. Every time Sweden moved the chains, the Canadian defense would come up with another big stop. In the third quarter, the defense would make the play of the game as linebacker Jenn De Guise intercepted quarterback Martina Karlsson, who was forced to scramble out of the pocket, returning the ball 19 yards for the decisive touchdown increasing the lead to 12-0 to end the third quarter.
The fourth quarter was filled with excitement, as running back Erika Hinders on the opening play returned the kickoff for a 6-yard touchdown finding room in the middle of the field then jetting out to the sideline cutting the deficit to 12-6.
With a personal foul on the kickoff return, Canada started on Sweden’s own 35-yard line but linebacker Pillan Plass sacked the quarterback and then Johanna Knutsson recovered a fumble giving the ball to Sweden on their own 39-yard line.
Penalties continued to haunt Sweden as they were forced to punt on their next drive.
With only 1:39 left in the game, it looked like Canada would run the clock down for the victory, but the hometown heros playing in front of more than 500 fans did not give up as Sweden’s Nina Kiviharju stripped the ball taking over on their own 17-yard line. And quarterback Karlsson connected with Erika Hinders for 17 yards with 1:07 left in the game.
But Canada’s defense yet again came up big as they secured a 12-6 victory as Christina Goulet forced and recovered a fumble with 51 second left in the game.
Host Sweden takes on Canada at 6pm local time / 12pm EST today at the Zinkensdamms IP Stadium in Stockholm. Team USA resumes play on Thursday at 6pm / 12pm EST on Thursday, July 1 against Finland, while Austria also faces Finland at 1pm / 7am EST on Tuesday, June 29.
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