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Troopers, Hammers Keep Their Winning Streaks Alive With Convincing Victories

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The current top two teams in the Kraft Family Israel Football League kept their winning streaks alive. The Petah Tikva Troopers beat the Ramat Hasharon Hammers 42-22, and the Jerusalem Big Blue’ Lions blew out the Haifa Underdogs 40-9.

The Jerusalem Lions ran all over the Haifa Underdogs in their 40-9 thumping.Credit: Ben Kol

Troopers’ QB Avrami Farkas got the scoring going when he threw a short touchdown pass to TE Aryeh Eastman. The Hammers came right back to tie the game up at eight with a 37-yard kick return by Ben Landon and a 37-yard TD pass from Jordan Curran to his brother Jonathan. In the second quarter, Farkas found Danny Mikhailov for a 19-yard score, 16-8. Landon ran in a score with two minutes to play in the half, tying the game at 16.

The Troopers punted to start the second half, and as the Hammers attempted to do the same, a bad snap gave Petah Tikva great field position and Dani Eastman ran the ball in from there, 22-16. The Hammers shanked a punt and the Troopers made them pay immediately with another Farkas-Mikhailov touchdown, 30-16. The Hammers turned the ball over on downs, and Eastman ran 54 yards for another score, as the clock ran out on the third quarter, 36-16.

Eastman returned a punt 38 yards for a score, 42-16, with 2:19 to play, before Landon drove his team down the field and took the ball in for a more-respectable 42-22 final margin.

Farkas completed 16/28 passes for 212 yards, three scores and three interceptions. Eastman rushed six times for 103 yards and two scores. Mikhailov caught 4-53-2. Eastman, Roth and Davis each had eight tackles for the Troopers.

Jordan Curran completed 6/19 passes for 108 yards, a score and a pick, with brother Jonathan catching six passes for 131 yards and a score. Landon ran for 36 yards and two TDs, adding 15 yards receiving. Matis Goldmeier finished with five tackles and two picks.

Big night for Big Blue

Big Blue reeled off the first 18 points of its game en route to a 40-9 romp over the Haifa Underdogs.

Slippery playing conditions led to a Matt Kauffman fumble on the first drive of the game, and the Lions’ Aryeh-Leib Sklar recovered the ball.

David Abell found Moshe Epstein for the first score, Ezzy Jaski for the second touchdown and Misha Belov to make it 18-0 Jerusalem. Haifa’s Ilya Averbuch hit a 30-yard field goal to put Haifa on the board with five minutes left in the half (18-3). The teams exchanged punts, and the Lions turned the ball over on downs right before the break.

However, Jerusalem responded with three consecutive touchdowns, as Belov made a nifty diving catch to pull in his second score, Binyamin Schultz intercepted Kauffman’s pass on the ensuing drive and ran it back 30 yards to the house, and Abell found Jaski for a 38-yard scoring strike on the first play of the fourth quarter, running the score to 40-3.

Kauffman finally made it into the end zone late in the fourth quarter when he found TE Amitai Chubinski for a 19-yard touchdown.

Abell completed 16/30 passes for 229 yards, five TDs scores and no picks, also leading his team with 16 yards on the ground. Jaski caught nine passes for 152 yards and two scores and Belov added 3-33-2. Leor Markose, Charnowitz and Sklar each had eight tackles for the Lions.

Kauffman completed 12/30 passes for 88 yards, a score and two interceptions, and Chubinski caught 8-91-1. Mica Allon had nine tackles in the loss.

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