Just six days after defeating the Danube Dragons 31-7 the SWARCO Raiders, sister team of The Oakland Raiders, host the Kornmesser Rangers in week 4 of the 2012 Austrian Football League (AFL) season. Kickoff at Tivoli Stadium on Saturday, April 14 is at 6 a.m. PT (3 p.m. CET).
The Tyroleans won the first meeting against the Rangers 52-0 in the season-opener. Despite the lopsided victory SWARCO Raiders head coach Shuan Fatah warns his team: "We can't take the Rangers lightly. They will fight like lions and will do everything to erase the memories of the first matchup. It's very important for us to play focused right from the start".
After a nine-year hiatus the Rangers returned to the AFL with a 26-game winning streak, but had to learn some tough lessons this season. After falling 52-0 to the SWARCO Raiders on opening weekend they lost 67-0 at the JCL Graz Giants, before losing 55-0 at the Raiffeisen Vikings Vienna on Easter Monday.
In their 52-0 win over the Rangers SWARCO Raiders QB Kyle Callahan completed 9 of 14 passes for 126 yards and a touchdown. He also had 8 rushes for 70 yards and a score. RB Andreas Hofbauer had 11 runs for 39 yards and 2 touchdowns. RB Florian Grein and RB Lukas Miribung also scored against the team from Mödling.
WR Talib Wise caught 3 balls for 66 yards and a touchdown. He also had two punt returns for 63 yards. The Tyrolean defense also played well, allowing only 6 first downs and 146 total yards. DT Reinhard Pardeller had a sack, forced a fumble and had 7 tackles (7 solo). DE Markus Hechenberger recovered a fumble and CB Manuel Eisenführer caught an interception.
In total Callahan completed 31 of 53 passes for 459 yards and 4 touchdowns this season. He also rushed 19 times for 147 yards and 2 touchdowns. Hofbauer gained 153 yards on 43 carries and scored 6 touchdowns already. Grein had 15 rushes for 128 yards and scored twice. Miribung gained 46 yards on 7 carries and scored a touchdown.
Wise's only game action this year was against the Rangers. WR Julian Ebner leads his team with 10 catches for 153 yards and 2 touchdowns. WR Damaso Tarneller caught 6 passes for 86 yards and a touchdown. WR Clemens Erlsbacher caught 3 balls for 60 yards and had a run for 11 yards.
The SWARCO Raiders defense allowed opponents an average of 11 first downs and 201.6 yards per game. They gave up only one offensive touchdown in three contests.
DT Reinhard Pardeller totalled 9.5 tackles (9 solo), a sack a forced fumble and 3.5 tackles for loss this season. DE Markus Hechenberger recovered a fumble and CB Manuel Eisenführer picked off two passes this season. LB Christoph Schilcher leads the team with 11 tackles (10 solo), followed by LB Florian Hueter, who has 10 tackles (9 solo). LB Philipp Margreiter has 9 tackles (7 solo), recovered a fumble and scored on a blocked punt return touchdown. LB Chris James forced 2 fumbles, had 2 sacks and blocked a punt in his season debut last week.
The Rangers offense relies on QB Craig Maynard and RB Zach McCaskill. In week 1 Maynard had 16 rushes for 56 yards against the SWARCO Raiders, but he completed only one of his 6 passes for 29 yards and threw an interception. McCaskill gained only 4 yards on 3 carries. On the season Maynard completed only 2 of 20 passes for 38 yards with 2 interceptions. He rushed 49 times for 64 yards. McCaskill had 29 rushes for 106 yards. RB Lars Gabler gained 60 yards on 17 runs.
The Rangers offense had only 19 first downs and gained only 297 total yards in their three games. Their defense gave up an average of 359.3 yards per game. LB Felix Schildorfer leads his team with 10 tackles (9 solo) and a sack. DL Robert Dragotinits also recorded a sack. The Rangers also forced three fumbles.
Watch the SWARCO Raiders 2012 season live and as-live for free on www.raidersTV.at.