23 Apr, 2019
ST. PETERSBURG SWANS - 2018-19 MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY PREMIERSHIP SEASON
“LAW FIRM” OFFENSE PROPELS BLOODS
The “law firm” of Jones, Makki, Morton and Jones is had their evening in court Saturday at Largo Sports Complex, litigating the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Championship Final against the upstart Florida Lions.
While the Lions proved to be brave and worthy adversaries, the Swans’ massive second quarter outburst left little room for cross-examination.
Down 6-3 early after three errant long-range attempts, St. Petersburg quickly got back on track, racing to a 71-27 lead at the big break and never looking back.
With CJ Morton, Dustin Jones and Robbie Scarallo consistently able to navigate the defensive challenges presented by the Lions, Adham Makki and Sydney native Clint Jones were able to dictate action forward, leading to a record five supergoals on the evening.
Although the Lions – coming off a huge 186-72 win over the Lakeland Tigers in the Preliminary Final – matched up well with the Bloods, they were unable to use their speed advantage to their benefit, often ending up trapped on their own end.
The win ends the Swans’ (10-1) winter campaign on a high note, and avenges a loss to Starfish FC in the 2018 Summer Final.
St. Petersburg’s schedule will now pivot to the 2019 MLF Florida Derby vs the Bloods’ cross-state brethren, the Miami Saints.
The Swans will tackle Starfish FC in the first Derby matchup, May 11 at 11 AM.
SWANS DECLAW LEOS, TAKE FLAG; 112-63
A high-octane attack – fueled by a single-game record five supergoals – lifted the St. Petersburg Swans (10-1, 40 points) to a 112-63 victory over a resilient Florida Lions side in the 2018-19 Major League Footy Championship flag, Saturday in Largo, Florida.
After an inaccurate Swans start saw the Lions take an early 6-3 lead, St. Petersburg righted the ship to a 184.108.40.206 – 1.0.6 advantage at the first break.
That relatively quiet first stanza would quickly be overshadowed, as the floodgates opened for the Bloods’ attack in the second frame.
Paced by a precise point-to-point attack that saw Sydney native Clint Jones able to collect a basket while patrolling unimpeded in forward, the Swans blitzed to 71-27 lead at the big break.
The second half, played in intermittent rain that seemed to turn on and off like a faucet, also saw the Lions’ offense begin to flow.
With veterans Jeff Grubb and Tom Mathew spearheading the comeback, Florida showed flashes of the prolific scoring side that put up a stunning 186 points in the MLF Preliminary Final, as the Lions bounced back to outscore St. Petersburg 33-24 in the third quarter.
That success proved fleeting, however, as the Swans held the Florida attack to just three behinds in the final frame, en route to the 112-63 final.
While the result puts the damper on the season finish for the Lions, the side – outfitted with AFL Queensland’s Palm Beach Currumbin’s 2017 Grand Finals jumpers – saw the new MLF side finish 6-6, 24 points, knocking out the Lakeland Tigers in the Preliminiary Final.
For the St. Petersburg Swans, the win caps a league-leading 10-1 season, avenging a 2018 Summer Championship loss to Starfish FC.
The Swans will now pivot to the 2019 Florida Derby Series against cross-state brethren the Miami Saints, when Derby play begins May 11.
BLOODS’ JONES GANG PREPS FOR SATURDAY SHOOTOUT
The St. Petersburg Swans (9-1) will be looking to make it hard for the upstart Florida Lions (6-5) to keep up with the Joneses, when the sides meet this Saturday in the Major League Footy 2018-19 Championship Final.
Ball up at Largo Sports Complex is 7 PM Eastern.
With like-named, if unrelated, on-field leaders in American footy veteran Dustin Jones and Sydney native Clint Jones leading the way, St. Petersburg hopes to put an exclamation point on what’s been a successful winter campaign.
The Lions – fresh off a resounding 182-76 thrashing of the # 2 seed Lakeland Tigers in the April 13th Preliminary Final – stand as the Red and White’s last obstacle in a winter season in which the flag has been an expectation for the league-leading Swans.
Florida enters the contest with the highest-scoring offense in the circuit, while St. Pete leads all comers in wins, points and percentages.
As attention turns to an exciting summer MLF Florida Derby as the Swans gear up for their annual summer-long season of matches with cross-state brethren the Miami Saints, the Bloods’ ‘Jones Gang’ first seeks an affirmation in claiming the MLF winter flag.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
St. Petersburg Swans v. Florida Lions
Largo Sports Complex, Largo, Florida
April 20, 2019 – 7 PM
#FOOTYNIGHT FOR THE FLAG
The St. Petersburg Swans look to put a positive finish on a strong 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season, Saturday, April 20, when they face the surging Florida Lions in a 7 PM start.
Coming in at 9-1 (36 points), the Red and White will tangle with a Lions (6-5, 24 points) side fresh off a resounding 182-76 win over the #2 seed Lakeland Tigers.
Florida set a new MLF scoring mark in posting a jaw-dropping 99-12 halftime lead over the Tigers last weekend.
Concessions and entertainment will abound as the MLF Championship Final comes to the friendly confines of the Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
For the Bloods, anything less than a flag will be a disappointment, after posting a 9-1 mark on the regular season.
SWANS TO FACE LEOS IN MLF FINAL
All proceeds directly benefit the growth of Aussie Rules Football in Florida.
The Lions will come into the flag affair on the merits of a blowout 182-76 win over the #2 seed Lakeland Tigers last Saturday night.
A league record 99-point first half saw the Lions score early and often, on their way to an 87-point lead at the big break.
Meanwhile, the Swans will be looking to avenge a summer season finals loss, and put a positive finish on a 9-1 season.
WHO WILL IT BE?
As Regular Season Wraps, Swans Scout Match-Ups
Around 1 PM this Saturday, the Major League Footy post-season field will be set, and the St. Petersburg Swans can begin looking forward to projected opponents as the Finals kick-off.
Looking to extend on an impressive 9-1 mark in the 2018-19 MLF Winter Premiership Season – while also exorcising the remaining demons from a summer let-down that saw Starfish FC run away with the Summer flag, the Bloods figure to march into the post-season at full-strength.
With one major exception.
The return of Queensland gun Ben McIntosh back to Gold Coast leaves St. Petersburg minus their most prolific scorer, although that big loss is partially offset by the return of field-general rover Dustin Jones.
While the veteran Jones is quite capable of taking control of any match, the loss of the runaway leader in ‘super goal’ tallies is likely to change the strategies of Swans coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott.
But, first things first.
Should Lakeland notch one win from this weekend’s double-header over the Kangas, the Tigers will sew up the #2 seed, and will face off against either the Florida Lions, Suncoast Suns or Starfish FC in the April 6 Major League Footy Preliminary Final.
However, if the Tigers should drop both contests to Orlando Saturday, it’ll be percentages – or perhaps even a ‘play-in’ game to determine which sides will advance to the Prelim.
The winner of the Preliminary Final will take on the Swans, Saturday, April 20 at 7 PM.
BLOODS IN CATBIRD SEAT AS WINTER FINALS NEAR
As the final three weeks of the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season see sides battling for a shot at the MLF Finals, one thing is known for sure – the race to the flag will run through the St. Petersburg Swans.
Having already sewn up the circuit’s minor premiership, St. Pete (9-1, 36 points) will host the winner of the Preliminary Final – a match-up of the #2 and #3 seeds – April 20 at 7 PM at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
With this weekend’s match-up between Orlando and Starfish FC likely to see the ‘Fish eliminated frompost-season contention, the season’s remaining two weeks will see Lakeland (5-5) posing a strong chance to lock up second place, with the Lions, Suns and (albeit unlikely), Starfish FC battling for the third position.
Although securing the minor premiership, along with the right to host the Major League Footy Championship Final is surely an accomplishment for the Red and White, a repeat of the Summer Final loss (to Starfish FC) back in September still stings.
St. Petersburg will be looking to finish the campaign strong – against whichever side they’ll face in four weeks’ time.
JOIN YOUR BLOODS AT #SPIRITOFSTPETE – MARCH 28
ST. PETE HOPES WINTER RUN LEADS TO FLAG
With a 9-1 record (36 points, 169.3%), the St. Petersburg Swans have been statistically dominant in the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season.
Now, coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott know the real test awaits, as the side sits idle in MLF play as the remaining sides battle for a spot in next month’s Finals.
An average outcome of 52-31 – with only one setback on the season – will mean little if the Swans fall short in the Championship Final, as they did in defeat at the hands of Starfish FC to end the Summer season.
A strong presence is expected as the club kicks off weeknight practice sessions this week, with most of the side’s core group participating in more intense kicking and handball drills.
Any edge the Bloods can glean over the next few weeks could come very much in handy, or a stellar regular season run over Winter 2018-19 will be relegated to but a footnote.
BLOODS AWAIT NEXT FOE
Having already sewn up the 2018-19 Major League Footy minor premiership, the St. Petersburg Swans now must watch and wait, as the rest of the ladder shakes out before April’s Finals begin.
With the fifth-seeded Suncoast Suns (3-5) needing a positive result to stay alive in the run home, this weekend’s #footynightinflorida match-up with Starfish FC (3-3) could go a long way in setting the pecking order as the regular season schedule draws to a close.
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The ‘Fish – currently sitting in the #4 spot with four games remaining, could do some damage of their own, with the possibility of jumping into second place this Saturday.
Having won three on the trot, Starfish FC could potentially repeat last Summer’s history – rising off the mat to take the MLF Summer Premiership over the Swans last September.
Meanwhile, the Florida Lions (5-5) currently sit at No. 2, having split the March 9 round robin with Orlando and the Bloods. With their regular season over, the Leos can only watch and wait in hopes of hanging in the top three.
Likewise, the Lakeland Tigers (5-3) will need breaks to go their way, but can do themselves a huge favor in sweeping Starfish FC when they meet March 30.
For the Red and White, the next few weeks of footy might be the most stress-free of the season…but when the calendar flips to April, the pressure will return with a vengeance.
SWANS SWEEP; CLINCH MINOR PREMIERSHIP
Paced by six super goals from top gun Ben McIntosh (Labrador Tigers/AFL Queensland), the St. Petersburg Swans swept the last installment of #footynightinflorida.
In handing out defeats to both the Orlando Kangas and Florida Lions, St. Petersburg clinched the Major League Footy minor premiership, locking up first place with a 9-1 mark (36 points).
Game Two on the evening saw the Bloods thump the Kangas in emphatic fashion, running out 220.127.116.11 – 1.2.8 winners, as McIntosh notched half his night’s tally of 10-point supers.
In a somewhat tighter affair – the margin was only nine at the break, despite two more 10s from McIntosh – St. Pete stifled the Florida Lions in the second half, on the way to the 18.104.22.168 – 4.4.28 final.
With the Swans’ 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership regular season schedule now complete, St. Petersburg will have four weeks to observe, while the active sides jockey for ladder position en route to the MLF Playoffs in April.
The Lions (5-5, 20 points) currently stand in the #2 seed, with Lakeland (5-3, 20 points) in third place.
With two games remaining, Lakeland would seem well-poised to sew up a playoff berth, while fourth seed St. Petersburg Starfish FC also remains in the hunt.
After a March 9 bye week, Major League Footy action returns at 7 PM, Saturday, March 16, as the Suncoast Suns host Orlando at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
The St. Petersburg Swans will look to cap the 2018-19 MLF Winter Premiership Season with a positive result, when they meet the Orlando Kangas, Saturday night at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
Ball-up for Game One in the #footynightinflorida twin-bill is 7 PM.
Entering at 7-1 (28 points), and comfortably in the mix for one of three Major League Footy playoff berths, St. Petersburg can lock up the #1 seed – and minor premiership – with a sweep of Saturday’s proceedings.
The Kangas, coming off a February 23 sweep at the hands of the Lakeland Tigers, are currently seventh on the ladder, but can move up in a hurry should they take both matches Saturday night.
With two losses last week by a total of six points, the Kangas come into to the meeting with St. Petersburg at 1-3 (4 points), but with a narrowly positive point differential of +5.
The Kangas and Tigers combined for a record 302 total points scored in last weekend’s double-header, and the ‘Roos have six games remaining in which to climb back to relevance.
That climb will begin under the lights Saturday, while the Swans will seek to defend their Aussie Fives home before the playoffs kick off next month.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY – #FOOTYNIGHTINFLORIDA
St. Petersburg Swans v. Orlando Kangas
Saturday, March 2, 2019 – 7 PM
Largo Sports Complex, Largo, FL.
CATCH THE SWANS @ SPIRIT OF ST. PETE!
Spirit of St. Pete is a monthly celebration of the burgeoning maker community in the ‘Burg, and features vendors showcasing arts, crafts, food and much more, and all made right here in the Sunshine City!
Now on a new night – 6PM – 9PM on the final Thursday monthly – Spirit of St. Pete is a definitely a ‘Don’t Miss!’.
St. Petersburg Swans coaches and players will be on hand to introduce newbies to our great sport, and will have tons of giveaways for new supporters, so mark your calendar now for this great monthly market!
Kozuba and Sons Distillery is located in the Warehouse Arts District, 1960 5th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, 33712.
TABLE MAY TURN ON SATURDAY TANGLE
With the calendar set to flip to March, the race for the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership flag is heating up.
And, although the St. Petersburg Swans are seemingly comfortable at the top of the ladder with a 7-1 record (28 points), the Bloods’ playoff future may start to unfold this Saturday.
The Lakeland Tigers (3-3, 12 points) are poised to make a big leap on the ladder, and will be armed with three new Australia natives when they take on the Orlando Kangas (1-1, 4 points) in a matinee twin-bill.
A Tiger sweep would push Lakeland from the fifth spot on the ladder into third place – and in position for a possible playoff run.
In the Major League Footy Premiership season format, the top three seeds qualify for post-season play, with the #2 and #3 seeds squaring off in a preliminary.
Meanwhile, positive results this Saturday for the Kangas – who have eight regular-season games remaining – will create a jam in the middle of the pack, at least for this week.
With the Swans set to take on the Shinboners in the next installment of #footynightinflorida, Saturday, March 2 at 7 pm – Largo Sports Complex, a Kangas sweep over the Tigers this Saturday will make things very interesting in an action-packed March toward the Championship Final.
This week, the Red and White can only watch and wait – but the table may be set for a battle next Saturday.
The new St. Petersburg Swans app for Android devices is now available for free download on the Google Play Store.
Staying Up To Date with the Bloods is easy with the St. Pete Swans app – featuring Team News, Match Reports, Tickets, the St. Petersburg Swans Team Store, Live Audio Streaming and much more.
The app is optimized for devices running Android versions 8 and above (including Pie).
Click the Google Play badge below to download the St. Petersburg Swans app on Google Play…And, if you’re on an iOS device (iPhone, iPad), watch for the release of the St. Pete Swans app in the App Store later this Spring!
THE RUN HOME: SWANS HAVE COMPANY IN FINALS CHASE
Although the St. Petersburg Swans remain comfortably atop the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season ladder at 7-1, there’s suddenly stirring in the standings, as the season makes its turn into the home stretch.
With four consecutive games on the slate, the Suns have the potential to make major noise – possibly moving from fourth to second on the table in just two weeks’ time.
The Bloods, meanwhile, can do little but observe for now, as the side’s final MLF regular-season matches won’t come until March 2.
#FOOTY, #SIZZLE FOR BLOODS’ OZ DAY FETE
The St. Petersburg Swans will bring the 2019 Australia Day celebration to Florida, when the club hosts a footy double-header, Saturday, January 26 in St. Pete.
Training begins at 10 AM, followed by a twin-bill of footy action at 11 AM.
The club’s free Australia Day after-party for players and members will immediately follow the footy, with traditional sausages and Aussie adult beverages on hand.
WIND-BLOWN BLOODS OUTLAST BRAVE BOMBERS
After a razor-tight Game One that saw five lead changes before a 46-43 St. Petersburg win over a gallant Tampa Bay Bombers side, the Bloods hit the afterburners in a windswept Game Two, running out 75-50 winners in the Saturday nightcap at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
The result secured a crucial eight points on the ladder for St. Pete, now 7-1 (28 points).
A frustrated Tampa Bay side dropped to 2-6 (8 points) on the season.
Both sides have just two games remaining as the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season makes its turn to the home stretch.
And, while the Swans currently sit comfortably above the pack, they’ve by no means yet avenged for a Summer Season that ended one win shy of the flag.
Tom Mathew and Dustin Jones led the Red and White charge, while Robbie Scarallo, Curtis Speller and Adham Makki spearheaded a spirited effort for the hard-luck Bombers.
The Swans also saw stand-out performances from rookies Nick Wright and Jonathan Johnson; while newly-converted fullback Jake Keglor’s booming clearing kicks helped the Bombers repeatedly flip the short field.
The fast and furious MLF ‘Aussie Fives’ game play format saw the sides total 214 points and eight lead changes on an evening where the Bombers’ wind-blown scoring inaccuracy determined the final outcome, as Tampa Bay had no shortage of opportunities.
Despite the result, Tampa Bay (5th place) remains in the chase for one of three Finals berths, as four sides remain level with 8 points.
Major League Footy action heats up on Australia Day, as the Florida Lions (2-2, 8 points) face off with St. Petersburg Starfish FC (0-2), Saturday, January 26 in a matinee double-header. Ball-up for Game One is 11 AM EST.
ST. PETE LOOKS TO SWEEP TWILIGHT TWIN-BILL
While most of the Eastern USA will be spending the weekend dealing with snow, ice and frigid temps from an expected ‘polar vortex’ blast, the St. Petersburg Swans will host the Tampa Bay Bombers as Major League Footy action returns with a special Twilight Series Double-Header at Largo Sports Complex Stadium in Largo, Florida.
Ball-up for Game One is 7 PM, under decidedly-postcard conditions around 70 degrees.
The Bloods enter the contest atop the MLF ladder with a record of 5-1, while the Bombers come in at 2-4, and can virtually secure a playoff berth with a sweep of the evening’s proceedings.
In a scheduling quirk, the same two sides met January 12 in a rescheduling of a storm-called December clash, with the Swans battling back in Game Two to salvage a split in the twin-bill.
That result enabled the Bloods to stay well clear of the pack with 20 points in advance of this week’s rematch at the site of one of the sides’ most memorable clashes.
During the 2018 MLF Summer Season, the Bombers rallied to post two majors in the final minute of a July 14 affair, on their way to a 2-point win.
Major League Footy will celebrate Australia Day 2019 with a matinee double-header as the Florida Lions tangle with St. Petersburg Starfish FC, Saturday, January 26 at 11 AM in St. Pete, Florida.
BLOODS BOUNCE BACK; EARN SPLIT
Returning to action after an arduous Holiday Break, the St. Petersburg Swans shook off a bit of early rust to salvage a split of their Major League Footy double-header with a gallant Bombers side, January 12 at Crescent Lake Common in St. Pete.
With a Tom Mathew 10-pointer giving the Bombers (2-4, 8 points) the difference they needed in a 22.214.171.124 – 126.96.36.199 first game victory, the scrappy Same Olds also held strong in the first half of Game Two, scraping out a 1-point lead at the break.
From there, the Swans would recover their early-season offensive prowess, perhaps also seeing benefit from near-80 degree temps on a postcard January afternoon.
The Swans would go on to parlay a 23-5 run in the second half to capture Game Two, 188.8.131.52 – 0.2.8.20.
Queensland gun Ben McIntosh notched three super goals on the day, with Bomber debutant Josh Wurst recording a brave first match.
The result keeps the Bloods (5-1, 20 points) comfortable atop the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season ladder, 12 points clear of the pack.
In a bit of scheduling quirk, Saturday’s twinbill was a rematch of a December 15 contest called by thunderstorms…and will see the Swans and Bombers face-off again next week, as #footy returns to Largo Sports Complex Stadium in Largo, Florida, for the first Twilight double-header of 2019.
SWANS KICK OFF ’19 @ SPIRIT OF ST. PETE
The St. Petersburg Swans will kick off 2019 – and the second half of the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season – at the #spiritofstpete event at the super-trendy Kozuba & Sons Distillery in St. Pete.
The event is a celebration of craftsmanship and everything that puts the unique and talented #makers in #theburg front and center.
Spirit of St. Pete is 6-9 PM, Tuesday, January 8, 2019 at Kozuba & Sons Distillery.
The St. Petersburg Swans (4-0, 16 pts) re-take the ground Saturday, January 12 vs the Tampa Bay Bombers
SWANS AND BOMBERS IN PRE-TURKEY TILT
The St. Petersburg Swans (2-0) will entertain the resurgent Tampa Bay Bombers (1-1) in a pre-Thanksgiving tilt, Saturday in St. Pete. Ball Up for Game One is 11 AM.
The Swans come into the affair, last having swept both ends of a twin-bill vs. StarfishFC, October 27.
The Bombers parlayed a massive Game Two surge to earn a 66-25 win, and a double-header split with the Kangas last Saturday, leaving the Same Olds with a chance to displace the Bloods from the top of the ladder – should they see that momentum through to a sweep tomorrow.
The contest precedes next week’s scheduled Bye week for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Meanwhile, a Swans’ sweep would give the St. Pete side plenty of distance from a crowded pack in the 2-5 positions on the ladder, all standing at 1-1 (4pts).
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK FOUR:
St. Petersburg Swans v. Tampa Bay Bombers
Saturday, November 17, 2018
Game One: 11 AM
IDLE SWANS BENEFIT FROM TIGER COMEBACK
After a Lions charge – pouring on 38 points in the second half of Game One to seal a 54-36 win, the Tigers put their attack in order to claim a 52-32 victory in the back half of the matinee double-header.
That result sees the Tigers move into second place with a slim two-point advantage over the 3rd-place Lions after two weeks.
The Swans will return to action in Week Four versus the Tampa Bay Bombers, who’ll have a chance to take over first place themselves heading into that November 17 double-header.
The Bombers will tangle with the Kangas in a twin-bill, Saturday, November 10, in Week Three action.
SWANS RUN PAST ‘FISH; AVENGE SUMMER SHOCK
The St. Petersburg Swans are off to an emphatic 2-0 start to the season, having turned back an early offensive outburst from Major League Footy Summer Premiers Starfish FC, getting the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season underway, Saturday in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Starfish FC came out firing, racing to a 184.108.40.206 – 1.2.8 lead at the first break in Game One, only to be shut out in the second stanza, as the Swans turned the tide with a thumping 220.127.116.11 response, eventually running out Game One winners by 15.
Game Two of the matinee twin-bill at St. Pete’s historic Crescent Lake Common saw more of the same, with Ben McIntosh booting super goals in each frame en route to a 50-12 Swans victory.
The result erases some of the sting of the summer premiership stunner that saw Starfish FC take the Championship Final in a 120-114 win to cap a remarkable late-summer surge.
Saturday’s match saw Queenslander Nick Whiteside go down with a knee injury for the ‘Fish, while the Swans’ Aaron Crittenden was sidelined with a heel.
Game-time ‘feels-like’ temperatures just under 80 F were nearly 30 degrees cooler than for the Summer Championship Final in late-September.
The Season Opener followed an intense and extended combined training session, with coaches and EFL veterans Greg Bray and Matt Elliott leading their charges through a gauntlet of pre-game ruck drills.
At 2-0, (8 pts), the Swans open the season at the top of the ladder, and will look to continue Saturday’s momentum when they next retake the ground for a November 17 double-header vs the Tampa Bay Bombers.
SWANS’ ROUN CATCHES FIRE IN ’18
The steady progress of St. Petersburg Swans’ Kyle Roun from his first year in footy (2015) earned him the nod as the club’s ‘Most Improved Player’ in 2016.
It’s only been all upward since then for the lightning-fast 26-year old.
With his on-ball skills, game-changing speed and kicking accuracy becoming rounded by four years in footy, the soccer convert has also evolved into a more engaged amd emerging leader – on and off the ground.
His fiery play against the Swans’ cross-state rival Miami Saints demonstrated a new-found emotive style of play that emerged as the 2018 Major League Footy season went on.
In fact, it can be noted that side of Roun’s development first showed bloom during a hard-fought July 14 match that the fleet wing won in the waning moments, virtually single-handedly.
That performance turned a significant page in Roun’s development, and marked a key milestone in channeling a red-hot will to win.
That evolution was also on display in the Swans’ Championship Final match vs. Starfish FC Saturday, as Roun repeatedly opened on-point passages of play that saw St. Petersburg surge to a 92-85 lead at three quarter time.
Although FC would storm back to win the Final in the closing moments, the continuing emergence of St. Pete’s young leaders in Austen Kugler, Nick Whiteside, Roun and others will surely write a new chapter in the 2018-19 season.
Fortunately, footy supporters on Florida’s West Coast won’t have to endure much of an off-season, as the Swans and Starfish FC will face off in a rematch Saturday, October 27 in the Season Opener as MLF pivots to an October-March regular season.
McINTOSH WRITING OWN FLORIDA FOOTY HISTORY
Perhaps no other event highlighted the St. Petersburg Swans’ successful run to a 7-4 mark that saw them finish as Major League Footy minor premiers and runners-up in the Championship Finals quite like the arrival of Queenslander Ben McIntosh.
With an exceptional 75-goal tally over 16 games – including 11 in the Red and White – McIntosh set a new scoring mark in taking full advantage of the circuit’s 120 yard x 60 yard ground.
In all, McIntosh registered an unprecedented 86% accuracy rate, as only 12 of his 87 scoring shots went as behinds.
His ability to also capitalize on the format’s 10-point ‘supergoals’ from beyond 40 also helped the Swans pace the competition in scoring, as St. Petersburg notched 754 points on the campaign.
The Swans’ average of 69 points a game is especially noteworthy when viewed in the context of the league’s standard game play of two 10-minute halves per match.
That’s a lot of scoring in precious little time.
McIntosh’s ability to score from anywhere on the ground helped elevate the overall offense, as his influence spread like wildfire throughout the Swans’ developing player roster.
If scoring is indeed contagious in footy, St. Petersburg’s season-long pace of 3.45 points per minute of play is a virus welcome in any rooms.
In an early-season run that saw him average 11 majors a game, McIntosh eclipsed Miami’s Neil Cohen – also a prolific kick – and he never looked back.
With six majors in the Major League Footy 2018 Summer Premiership Championship Final, McIntosh once again led all scorers, despite missing the entire second quarter and part of the fourth due to injuries to both heels.
That missed time loomed large in St. Petersburg’s last-minute 120-114 loss to Starfish FC in the Final and likely will reverberate as a key ‘what if’ for Swans’ coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott.
Fortunately, he skippers won’t have to ponder what ‘might have been’ very long.
The Swans will open the 2018-19 Premiership Season in a rematch with the ‘Fish, Saturday, October 27, as Major League Footy pivots to an October-March season schedule.
Odds are the Swans will be coming with their gunner locked in as they look to avenge last Saturday’s result – and an eye on writing his own piece of Florida footy history.
HEART & HUSTLE: SCHEIDT EXEMPLIFIES BLOODS’ ETHOS
Having just finished a 26-week season of head-to-head footy after transitioning to what amounts to a year-round schedule, it could be said that no footy club on the continent works harder than the St. Petersburg side.
But, there’s no ‘could’ about the Swans’ hardest-working member, Kenneth Scheidt.
The American footy veteran has appeared in nearly every weeknight kick around and every Saturday match or training three years’ running.
Returning this week after a very rare off-week, Scheidt anchored the defensive effort for the Swans in the Major League Footy 2018 Summer Premiership Championship Final, Saturday in St. Pete.
And, while the Bloods did not get the results they were looking for in a 120-114 loss to Starfish FC, Scheidt’s work in the backline likely prevented further damage on a day when offenses ran amok.
Often charged with tagging the opposition’s top forward, Scheidt’s dedication to improvement and scrappy, never-say-die style of play has become the de facto blueprint for Swans’ defenders.
Having earned the nickname ‘Mole’ earlier in his footy career, Scheidt happily wears the mongrel identity for a Swans’ side that has continued to improve as footy takes hold in Florida.
Often tasked with organizing weeknight drill sessions, and having also become an accredited umpire, Scheidt selflessly gives his all to the Red and White.
That willingness to share his personal standard for self-improvement as well as a deep-rooted passion for footy makes his example one every St. Petersburg player and supported can identify with.
Prioritizing having fun while improving his own skills in the world’s greatest team sport, Scheidt is a leader-by-example who continues to stir the Swans’ on- and off-field success.
KEGLOR SHOCK MOVE TO RUCK PAYS DIVIDENDS FOR ST. PETE
Trailing by 24 at the big break in Saturday’s Major League Footy Championship Final, Swans Assistant Coach Matt Elliott made the call to move fiery forward Jake Keglor to ruck, in part due to injury to Queensland gun Ben McIntosh.
With Keglor booting four goals in the first half, but with the Bloods down by an equal tally, the move was a surprising turn of events.
And, perhaps a risky strategy, given the game situation.
Instead, the tactic stabilized the Swans’ attack that saw the side win the frame 42-15 to take control of the contest.
Winning the tap and distributing effectively, Keglor solidified the middle in McIntosh’s absence.
Although St. Petersburg would ultimately fall short, dropping the match 120-114 in the wake of a shock last-minute scoring run by FC, the strategy of deploying Keglor as an option in ruck seems to have possibilities going forward, as the club contemplates moves ahead of the Winter Season launch in October.
Long one of the side’s leading scorers up front, and also flexible as an option at full back, Keglor’s game continues to evolve as he enters his fourth season.
The St. Petersburg Swans will meet Starfish FC in a rematch to open the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season, as the circuit pivots to an October-March schedule.
SWANS FALL SHORT IN THRILLER; 120-114
A prolific St. Petersburg Swans offense came up one goal short in Saturday’s Major League Footy 2018 Summer Premiership Championship, as the Bloods fell to a surging Starfish FC side, 120-114 in St. Pete.
Posting 754 points to pace the competition – including 114 in Saturday’s Final – the Swans showed no signs of wilting under the intense Autumn heat, racing to a 92-85 lead after three periods.
But, it was one Starfish defensive stand – later punctuated by two last-minute goals that the Swans couldn’t answer – that will stick in the Swans’ collective memory during the short ‘off-season’.
Mounting relentless pressure in a third quarter that saw them put up 42 points, the Swans were unable to convert an extended opportunity deep in the FC half that likely would have been the dagger.
Instead, the sequence would come back to haunt.
When a Clint Jones supergoal with less than two minutes left saw FC comeback to unlock a 108-108 tie on their way to a one-goal win, the Swans’ efforts to mount an offensive attack that at times seemed simply overwhelming ultimately came undone.
Finishing the campaign at 7-4 and falling short in the Final is sure to occupy the Bloods’ thoughts during an abbreviated off-season.
The two St. Pete sides will begin the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season in an October 27th rematch to kick off the circuit’s new official October-March schedule.
SINCE ’15, SWANS 19-5 AT THE ‘C’
The St. Petersburg Swans are looking for a serving of home cooking this Saturday’s 2018 Major League Footy Summer Championship Final, when the Bloods take on StarfishFC in an 11 AM tilt at the ‘C’.
With roughly half the side’s home matches since 2015 being played at Crescent Lake, the Swans have racked up an impressive 19-5 mark at the historic ground.
Since the Swans moved weekly training sessions from downtown St. Pete’s Campbell Park (the club continues to hold some night matches at the iconic gridiron), the importance of Crescent Lake has increased – leading to a naming rights partnership that sees the club refer to the ground as Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common when in use for Aussie Rules.
During the 2018 Major League Footy Summer Premiership Season, the Swans took the field as the home side on six occasions, coming away with a 5-1 mark that has the side confident in their ability to navigate the ground’s well-known quirks.
Of concern, however, is the fact that the Red & White’s only loss at Crescent Lake in 2018 came at the hands of this week’s Finals challenger.
Starfish FC clobbered the Swans 142-78 on May 12 – the only blemish on St. Pete’s record at Crescent Lake this season.
2018 MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY SUMMER CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
St. Petersburg Swans v. StarfishFC
Saturday, September 29, 2018 – 11 AM EDT
SWANS SEEK CROWN IN BATTLE OF THE ‘BURG
With a regular-season highlighted by big wins over cross-state brethren the Miami Saints, the St. Petersburg Swans enter Saturday’s 2018 Major League Footy Summer Season Championship Final with revenge on their minds.
At 7-3, the Swans reversed a mid-season swoon in turning back the Saints and Florida Lions in an exciting Super Saturday Showdown Carnival two weeks ago, and return to the Common at Crescent Lake with only one black mark on their 2018 Summer Campaign left to correct – a 142-78 drubbing at the hands of Starfish FC on May 12 stands as the side’s worst loss of the season.
While Coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott may have expected to reach the Summer Final, virtually no one in St. Pete would have thought they’d be facing the Starfish in the Championship.
The rout by the ‘Fish was the Blue and Gold’s only win on the year heading into the run home, when St. Petersburg’s original footy identity suddenly charged to life late, posting five wins on the trot to make the Final.
On a day made for footy glory, the Swans will look to lock up the summer crown with a win Saturday, though they won’t have much time to reflect on the 2018 campaign.
The circuit’s move to an October – March head-to-head season means Florida footy will see only a four-week break before action begins anew.
Major League Footy’s 2018-19 campaign will kick off October 27, 2018 – coincidentally, with a rematch of this weekend’s tilt by the lake.
MLF 2018 SUMMER CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL:
ST. PETERSBURG STARFISH FC (6-4) v. ST. PETERSBURG SWANS (7-3)
Saturday, September 29 – 11 AM EDT
SWANS-‘FISH CLASH IN MLF SUMMER FINAL
Twenty-five weeks of Major League Footy 2018 Premiership Season footy come down to a tangle between hometown sides this weekend, as the St. Petersburg Swans (7-3) take on Starfish FC (6-4) at Crescent Lake in St. Petersburg.
Ball up is 11 AM EDT at the historic ground, just north of Downtown St. Pete.
While the Swans come into the match having survived a late-season scare of two consecutive dispiriting losses before righting their affairs in the Super Saturday Showdown Carnival two weeks ago, Starfish FC comes in at full-charge.
The original St. Petersburg footy club, Starfish FC began this season on a horrid 1-4 pace that saw them more likely to capture the Wooden Spoon.
Rattling off five straight wins – including a season-defining 91-55 victory over the Tampa Bay Bombers last weekend – clinched a berth for the ‘Fish.
The loss knocked an equally-tough Bombers side out of this weekend’s proceedings.
With the independent circuit of 7-a-side Australian Football about to formally transition to an October-March head-to-head season, Major League Footy will close the books on a third successful campaign, one marked by an unprecedented run of weekly head-to-head footy that began in April.
The 2018-’19 Major League Footy Prermiership Season will kick off with a rematch of this weekend’s opponents, as the Swans and Starfish will renew their nascent rivalry on October 27 in the Winter Season Opener.
DATE WITH DESTINY: SWANS AWAIT FINAL FOE
Saving their season with a sweep of the Major League Footy Showdown Carnival – knocking out the Miami Saints and Florida Lions in the process – the St. Petersburg Swans now await their opponent for the 2018 MLF Championship Final.
A year that began with a torrid 5-1 start nearly went off the rails in two consecutive losses to the Saints and Tampa Bay Bombers, only to see the Bloods regroup in the #supersaturday event, with a 18.104.22.168 – 3.1.19 rout of Miami followed with a nerve-wracking 25-point win over the Lions.
Earning a 7-3 mark in a Major League Footy 2018 Premiership Season that spanned 24 weeks, the Championship Final – Saturday, September 29 – will see the Swans match up with either Starfish FC (5-4) or the Bombers (6-2).
With the circuit transitioning to an October – March schedule, the winner won’t have long to savor their victory, as the 2018-’19 Season will kick off October 27.
SCENES FROM #SUPERSATURDAY
One of the key advantages of the Common is the ability to configure the ground for gridiron, soccer, AFLX – all the way to a full footy oval.
On this particular day, it was more suited for #junglewarfare.
SWANS ROLL TO SHOWDOWN SWEEP
The St. Petersburg Swans saved their best for last.
Entering Saturday’s Major League Footy Showdown Carnival on the heels of two losses that threatened to derail their once-promising 2018 campaign, the Swans came out firing on all cylinders against cross-state rival Miami Saints.
Ripping to a 25-0 lead on their way to a convincing 22.214.171.124 – 3.1.19 win to salt away this season’s edition of the Florida Derby, two games to one.
That result also extended the Bloods hope going into their nightcap versus a resilient Florida Lions line-up laced with young guns.
After a creaky start that saw both sides tentative going forward, crawling to a 1.5.11 – 1.0.6 score at the break, St. Petersburg turned on the offense in the second half, as Aaron Crittenden, Jason Blackbourn and Ben McIntosh ignited the attack with three quick strikes to open the frame.
The homestanding Swans would go on to turn back a brave Lions side, 5.8.38 – 2.1.13.
In sweeping both games of the Showdown Carnival, the Swans finish the Major League Footy 2018 Premiership Season at 7-3, 28 points, and atop the MLF ladder as minor Premiers.
The St. Petersburg win also punches the Swans’ ticket for the 2019 Major League Footy Championship Final.
An end-of-season shock result, perhaps – the Swans had lost by 51 to Miami earlier in the summer, and also blew a late lead to fall to Tampa Bay 110-100 in back-to-back collapses that blemished an early season run of success.
Those troubles are now in St. Pete’s rear-view, and the next clash awaits.
TODAY’S VENUE: ROLLBOTTO OVAL @ CRESCENT LAKE
The footy returns to historic Crescent Lake in St. Petersburg, as the St. Pete Swans (5-3) host a three-team ‘triple-header’ with the Florida Lions (4-2) and Miami Saints (3-1).
Game One (Lions v. Saints) is a 4 PM ball-up.
All three sides are in a race for one of only three berths in the Major League Footy Championship Finals, and today’s action should determine each side’s playoff fate.
Having dropped two straight, the Swans’ season hangs in the balance, as the club can potentially clinch a berth or be eliminated from the Finals, depending on today’s results.
Crescent Lake Park is the historic Spring Training home of the New York Yankees and New York Mets, and has served as the Swans’ training ground since 2014.
Although Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common can be configured as a traditional, full-sized footy oval, today’s matches will be played in Major League Footy regular season dimensions of 120 yards long x 60 yards wide.
Teams will be seven players on the ground, with three in interchange, and each game will be played as 2 x 10 minute halves.
This is the Saints’ second visit to Central Florida on the season, having split matches with Starfish FC and the Swans on April 14.
The Saints (3-1) won home matches in Ft. Lauderdale this season, trouncing both the Swans and the Clearwater Kangas at Croissant Park.
Today’s match is only the second 4 PM start time for a home game in Swans history, and the first three-team carnival with an afternoon start.
SWANS-SAINTS SET FOR EPIC CLASH
The St. Petersburg Swans (5-3) and Miami Saints (3-1) will conclude this season’s Home and Away Series between the two Florida rivals when the Swans host a Showdown Carnival, Saturday at 4 PM in St. Pete.
The results will likely have direct impact on the Swans’ Major League Footy Championship Finals hopes, as the Saints’ 100-49 win in Ft. Lauderdale on April 23 – coupled with a 110-100 loss to the upstart Tampa Bay Bombers – took the shine off the Bloods’ scintillating start.
The Swans defeated Miami 66-11 in the MLF Season Opener, April 14 at Largo Sports Complex.
Those results follow a definitive pattern in the 5-year rivalry between the clubs – each team nearly always wins at home.
That’s a trend St. Petersburg will be looking to continue this Saturday when the club’s meet in this season’s ‘rubber match’ between the to sides, with a positive result quite likely assuring the Swans a playoff opportunity.
Since the series began, both sides stand level at 5-5, with Miami never scoring more than 77 points in a game played on Florida’s West Coast.
Concerning for the Swans, however, is that those points came in a 37-point Miami win at Crescent Lake Common, where the sides will meet this Saturday.
That result marked the first time the Swans had scored fewer than 100 points in a home match-up with their Southern brethren, including the highest scoring match in St. Pete history – a 146-38 season opening win in 2017.
While the Swans have typically had Miami’s number in games played in St. Petersburg, Miami has lost only a 42-28 decision in the St. Pete side’s first-ever match at Central Broward Regional Park and Stadium in 2014.
Since that inconspicuous start, the Saints have dominated their home ground, and – other than that slip-up at Crescent Lake last season, the Swans have likewise defended their neighborhood with aplomb.
Saturday’s match between the Miami Saints and St. Petersburg Swans will come in Game Two of the Showdown Carnival. Ball up is 4:45, after the conclusion of the Miami – Florida Lions 4 PM match that starts the series.
A win for the Swans could mean more than bragging rights – it could punch their ticket to the MLF playoffs.
B-MAC UNTOUCHABLE FOR MLF SCORE LEAD
Ben McIntosh enters Week 23 action with a momentous lead in overall scoring (61.8.374) for the 2018 MLF Season, but there’s plenty of room for change in the Top 5 before the Finals begin.
Miami’s Neil Cohen (90 points) has a tenuous hold on the 2nd spot, with Aaron Crittenden charging close behind with 84 – and a solid shot to finish the season as the runner-up.
Usually a backliner due to superior on-ball skills, American footy veteran Kenneth Scheidt of the Swans’ has an outside shot to pass teammate Jason Blackbourn and Cohen for #3, providing he has opportunity over the final three weeks of the season.
With McIntosh, Crittenden and Scheidt all expected in the St. Petersburg line-up Saturday, odds are the goals will come in bags.
Saturday’s first match is a 4 PM ball-up when the Saints visit the Swans.
The Florida Lions (4-2) will also take part in the three-game Carnival at Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common.
|CRITTENDEN, TAMPA BAY||12||12||84|
|BLACKBOURN, ST. PETE||9||4||58|
|LUMSDEN, ST. PETE||3||1||19|
BLOODS SEEK SPARK IN SUMMER SEASON FINALE
Looking to turnaround a 2-game losing skid that began with a 51-point road loss in Ft. Lauderdale on June 23, the St. Pete Swans hope to take advantage of expected sultry conditions in a 4 PM start at Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common this Saturday.
Needing a positive result from the weekend, the Red and White will be seeking to emphasize team speed and forward pressure in an effort to neutralize Miami nemeses in tall Neil Cohen and stalwart Tom Hecker.
With the Florida Lions (4-2) also joining the three-game late-season carnival at the historic ground, the Major League Footy 2018 Finals picture will see a bit of clarification this Saturday, as the Swans in particular can either clinch a berth or be eliminated from contention.
Riding a 2-game losing streak after starting the campaign 5-1, St. Petersburg’s time for an emphatic statement is now.
And it’ll need to begin with a spark.
#SUPERSATURDAY OF FOOTY IN THE ‘BURG!
With Major League Footy 2018 Premiership Season Finals berths on the line, the St. Petersburg Swans will host the Florida Lions and cross-state rivals the Miami Saints in a Showdown Carnival, Saturday in St. Pete.
Ball up for Game One (Lions v. Saints) is 4 PM at Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common in St. Petersburg.
Admission is free and all are welcome – and join us after the footy for Aussie teapot cocktails at the Crafty Squirrel in downtown St. Pete!
The Swans (5-3) look to return to their winning ways, needing at least one victory – and possibly two – to assure a berth in the MLF Championship Finals.
The upstart Lions (4-2) and the always-tough Saints (3-1) stand in the Bloods way, setting up what’s sure to be a ripping day of footy at the ‘Lake’.
St. Petersburg Swans home matches at Crescent Lake are presented by Rollbotto.
MIDWEEK REPORT: BLOODS BACK IN ACTION
Six weeks ago, the Swans’ place on the 2018 Major League Footy ladder seemed all-but-secure.
Cruising to a 5-1 mark entering a midsummer clash with the MLF debutant Tampa Bay Bombers, the Bloods held a 6-point lead with less than two minutes between themselves and a sure lock on a Finals berth.
That midsummer night’s dream turned into a nightmare when the Bombers stormed back to take a razor-tight affair, 110-100.
The loss, coupled with a blowout defeat at the hands of the Miami Saints, made the road to the Finals significantly more fraught for the Red and White.
Now at 5-3 (20 points), and having fallen to third on the ladder, the Swans are seeking to recapture their early-season magic when the Saints and Florida Lions visit Rollboto Oval at Cresent Lake Common this Saturday.
The final two matches of the regular season loom like a pendulum for St. Petersburg – win and they’re in, lose and go home.
The St. Petersburg Swans will take on the Saints 1t 4:45 PM in Game Two of Saturday’s ‘triple-header’ carnival. Game Three will see the Swans tangle with the Lions at 5:25 PM.
BLOODS-‘FISH TO OPEN MLF WINTER SEASON
Ball-up will be 7 PM, and tickets ($10 general admission) will go on sale September 4, 2018.
The match will mark the first in the circuit’s adaptation of an October – April season schedule, with the Swans on tap for an 8-game schedule, culminating with an April 27, 2019 Championship Final.
The full Major League Footy 2018-19 Season Schedule will be released Tuesday, September 4.
AUTUMN PRESSURE SQUARELY ON SWANS
September footy in Florida promises to be a high-stakes sojourn into Autumn, as the St. Petersburg Swans suddenly find themselves in a three-way battle for a Finals berth.
After a sparkling 5-1 start to the 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season, St. Petersburg has dropped their last two outings, while both the Tampa Bay Bombers (6-2) and Florida Lions (4-2) have come on strong in the late days of summer.
Tampa Bay’s Week 20 double-header sweep over the Clearwater Kangas put Tampa Bay in first place on the ladder for the first time this season, and has positioned the Bombers for a sparkling September.
While that result has pushed the Swans out of the top-spot they’ve occupied since the start of the 2018 campaign, St. Petersburg can control its own destiny.
Wins over Lakeland and Miami in the season’s closing weeks will propel the Bloods into a sure spot in the MLF Finals.
CRUCIAL MIAMI-ST. PETE TILT SET FOR SEPT 15
A critical late-season match-up between the St. Petersburg Swans and Miami Saints has been rescheduled for Saturday, September 15.
With just two matches remaining in their 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season, St. Petersburg stands atop the ladder at 5-3, and have occupied the top position wire-to-wire.
The Saints (3-1) will visit the St. Petersburg Swans Saturday, September 15 for the latest installment of #footynightinflorida, with the Lakeland Tigers also competing in a round-robin evening.
SWANS READY FOR FIGHT TO FINISH
With the 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season now well into the run home, the St. Petersburg Swans – at 5-3, and in first place on the ladder – are in need of one more positive result in order to lock up a berth in the MLF Finals.
Having led the table wire-to-wire since April, that state of play would have been hard to imagine earlier this summer.
Two consecutive losses after a sizzling 5-1 start have allowed the Tampa Bay Bombers and Florida Lions to climb into the thick of things at 4-2, with each having ample remaining opportunities to take over the league lead.
With a reschedule of a crucial match with cross-state rivals the Miami Saints (3-1) still pending, the St. Petersburg side has a distinct disadvantage, as both Tampa Bay and Florida have at least six more matches remaining – plenty of chances to pass the Swans by.
As MLF sides begin to coalesce into set roster lists for the 2018-19 campaign, the Swans side is also beginning to gel around a young core.
That young group will need to find its footing as the 2018 summer season comes to end – and before the MLF 2018-19 Premiership Season kicks off, Saturday, October 27.
BLOODS AWAIT MAKE-UP DATE FOR SAINTS CLASH
Likely needing a strong finish to maintain their wire-to-wire hold on the top of the Major League Footy 2018 Premiership Season ladder, the St. Petersburg Swans now await the reschedule of their rematch with the Miami Saints.
Originally scheduled for August 11, the next installment of the club’s ‘Footy Night in Florida’ Twilight Series will be announced in the coming days.
At 5-3, but losers of two straight, the Swans are precariously holding on to their first-place standing, and will benefit greatly with positive results in their season-ending slate.
BLOODS OBSERVERS AS SAINTS LOOM
As the 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season storms into Week 17 with a Florida Lions – Lakeland Tigers clash, the St. Petersburg Swans are in ‘watch and wait’ mode ahead of their rematch with the Miami Saints.
The Swans’ cross-state rivals will visit Saturday, August 11 in a 7 PM ball up.
Until then, St. Pete can only await the result of the weekend’s action.
A sweep of this Saturday’s twin-bill would move the Lions (2-0) into sole possession of the 2nd position on the MLF ladder – a spot claimed only last week by the surging Tampa Bay Bombers.
That result would also keep the Tigers (0-3) pinned to the bottom of the standings, while a split or a Tigers’ sweep would prove of great benefit to the Red and White – at least for the time-being.
At 5-3 and still atop the table, St. Petersburg can virtually ice the Eastern Conference minor premiership with a positive result against the Saints, but that’s far from assured in a run home that’s just heating up.
While the Swans trounced Miami 66-11 in their first match up, the Saints returned the favor in the last meeting – routing St. Petersburg 100-49 in Ft. Lauderdale.
For now, St. Pete is forced to watch and wait in hope of a result that keeps the charging Lions at arms’ length on the ladder.
The Florida Lions will face off against the Lakeland Tigers Saturday, April 4 in St. Petersburg. Game One will ball up at 11 AM.
With a resounding 120-84 win over the West Side Bombers (1-3), the Phoenix Scorpions (4-1) have risen after a season-opening loss to win four straight – sealing the 2018 Major League Footy Western Conference minor premiership.
The St. Petersburg Swans now look for an invite to the MLF finals party, which could see them take on the surging Scorpions.
Locked in a tit-for-tat with the scrappy Tombstone Marshals throughout the Summer Series, the Scorpions leveraged a schedule quirk in being first past the post.
With the minor premiership secured, the Scorpions will take on the Tempe Devils (0-3) in the Summer Series finale in Tempe, Saturday, July 28.
Saturday’s result also pushes the Scorpions past the Miami Saints, and into the #2 seed on the overall MLF ladder, trailing the Swans by 4 just points.
With the Swans set to host the Saints in an August 11 rematch – and the third match of the season between the cross-state rivals – St. Petersburg (5-3, 20 pts.) likely needs just one win in their final three matches in order to lock up a spot in the Eastern Conference finals – and perhaps a berth in the MLF Championship Final.
In the MLF finals format, the #2 and #3 seeds will meet in a win-or-go-home playoff, with the winner then taking on the #1 seed for the Conference championship.
With the East premiers slated to take on the West champs – now very likely to be the Scorpions – the Swans are hoping their recent two-game slide is an aberration, and not a ‘swan song’ on the 2018 campaign.
The Florida Lions (2-0) and Tampa Bay Bombers (2-2) join the Saints (3-1) as the true threats on the horizon, as both sides have six games remaining – even with this Saturday’s weather postponement in St. Petersburg.
StarfishFC – currently 1-2, but also with six games left – can also make a late-season move to wind up representing St. Petersburg in the finals.
SWANS FEELING SUMMER HEAT
Holding a 2-point lead with under 90 seconds to go, the Bloods were unable to hold on to the win Saturday vs. the resilient Tampa Bay Bombers.
A costly midfield turnover resulted in Kyle Roun’s booming goal to put the Bombers ahead, and a disastrous ensuing kick-out was intercepted to seal the Same Olds’ thrilling 110-100 comeback win.
Now sitting at 5-3, the Swans to-date wire-to-wire reign on the 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season ladder is suddenly looking perilous, in part due to circuit’s unbalanced schedule format.
With just three games remaining on the schedule, the Swans likely can maintain a Finals spot with any victory – but it may not work out that way.
The second-place Miami Saints are of course a major threat, but the upstart Bombers (2-2); as well as the Florida Lions (2-0) and Starfish FC (1-2) also all loom large for the stretch run, as each has up to six games remaining, and each could pass the Swans up on the chase.
St. Pete’s slumping score differential also lurks as a potential hazard, with two blowout losses (to Starfish FC and Miami) make the Swans’ current view from atop the ladder one full of dangers from below.
While the Swans will not return to MLF action until August 11 in a rematch with Miami (3-1), the ladder battle will heat up Saturday, July 21 when the Lions take on Starfish FC in a matinee twin-bill.
A sweep of this weekend’s affair would rocket the Leos to 4-0, into second place and easily within striking range.
For nearly a full month, the Bloods can only watch and hope for the best.
CHRIS GILLIGAN’S BIG INTERCEPT
St. Pete’s Chris Gilligan goes high over Starfish FC’s Marc Karver for the intercepting mark.
HIGHLIGHT: In this look back at the St. Petersburg Swans’ Opening Night sweep of the Miami Saints and StarfishFC, Chris Gilligan boots a major from long range in the Bloods’ 63-13 win over the ‘Fish at the Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
The St. Petersburg Swans return to Major League Footy action Saturday, June 2 when they host the Lakeland Tigers in a special matinee double-header at Crescent Common in St. Pete. Ball up is 11 AM.
SWANS HOST MIAMI IN ’18 OPENER
The St. Petersburg Swans kick off the 2018 Major League Footy Premiership Season Saturday, April 14 at 7 pm, as cross-state rivals the Miami Saints come to the Largo Sports Complex.
The match will be broadcast live at swansradio.us, with Rich Libero calling all the action.
SWANS CLINCH WINTER LEAGUE MINOR PREMIERS
The result eliminates the Orlando Kangas from contention to overtake to the top of the ladder.
Now at the top of the table with a 4-1 record and a 139.6 percentage, St. Petersburg will finish the 2017-18 Major League Footy winter campaign with next Saturday’s match, looking to repeat with a Premiership flag after last season’s 3-1 mark and victory over the Suncoast Suns in the Winter Championship.
The Swans host the Kangas, Saturday, March 24 at Crescent Lake Common in St. Petersburg. Ball up is 11 AM.
THRICE AS NICE: SWANS GO TO THREE-A-WEEK TRAININGS
With daylight savings time now in effect, and with Spring knocking on the door, the St. Petersburg Swans will begin preparing for a very busy 2018 Major League Footy schedule.
March does an about-face and goes ‘out like a lion’ this year, as the second half of the month features an elevated footy schedule.
MARCH 13 – KICKAROUND (CRESCENT LAKE – 5 PM)
MARCH 14 – THURSDAY TRAINING (CRESCENT LAKE – 6PM)
MARCH 17 – TRAINING AND SCRIMMAGE (CRESCENT LAKE – 10 AM)
MARCH 17 – ST. PATRICK’S DAY PUB CRAWL (MEET AT FERG’S – 7 PM)
MARCH 20 – KICKAROUND (CRESCENT LAKE – 5 PM)
MARCH 21 – THURSDAY TRAINING (CRESCENT LAKE – 6PM)
MARCH 24 – TRAINING AND SCRIMMAGE – CRESCENT LAKE (10 AM)
MARCH 27 – KICKAROUND (CRESCENT LAKE – 5 PM)
MARCH 28 – THURSDAY TRAINING (CRESCENT LAKE – 6 PM)
DETAILS FOR MARCH 31 – FOUR ‘N TWENTY BOWL – WILL BE ANNOUNCED FRIDAY, MARCH 16.
PLEASE NOTE: All events are always posted on Facebook, Teamer and Pitchero + the St. Pete Swans app (Android devices). Players are encouraged to follow events via SMS.
Free parking is available in the neighborhoods to the East and West of the Crescent Lake Common. The Common is located on the North (22nd Avenue N) side of the lake.
The 2018 match schedule is currently being updated at stpeteswans.com, and tickets for all Twilight Home Games at Four ‘N Twenty Field at Campbell Park will go on sale from 19 March. General admission tickets are $10. Proceeds directly fund the growth of Australian Football in Florida.
ALSO, PLEASE NOTE: It is anticipated that the Wednesday training sessions will switch to TAMPA beginning in April. Details and venue are TBA
INJURY SIDELINES SWANS’ STALWART KEGLOR
St. Petersburg Swans veteran and 2016 and 2017 high scorer Jake Keglor has been diagnosed with a Grade III LCL sprain. He is expected to miss 8-10 weeks of footy as he recuperates, although surgery is not required.
The injury befell Keglor in last week’s match at Crescent Lake Common.
Keglor’s ability to score from virtually anywhere on the ground – along with his defensive prowess when needed – makes him a key component of Bloods’ success.
With the Swans’ 2018 schedule looming, the loss of Keglor is a significant blow to the Bloods’ line-up, although a June return brings hope for the season’s stretch run.
SWANS’ 2018 SCHEDULE INCLUDES LA, JACKSONVILLE, MIAMI
The St. Petersburg Swans 2018 Major League Footy season schedule showcases a full slate of Twilight Home Games at Four ‘N Twenty Field at Campbell Park, along with exciting road trips to new footy clubs in Jacksonville, Miami and Los Angeles.
St. Petersburg will play a 6-match season series with the upstart Miami Saints, topped off by the 2018 Florida Cup in Ft. Lauderdale, September 22.
The Jacksonville Demons will take the ground for the first time, as they bow into MLF action July 28, hosting the Swans at 9A/Baymeadows Park.
St. Petersburg will go cross-continent to take on the home-standing Los Angeles side on August 25. LA will be stocked with NFL-level American football players new to footy at the MLF Los Angeles Combine on June 3.
Other highlights include two ‘State of Origin’ style matches with the Pittsburgh Blackbirds and Greater Northern Philadelphia, both featuring Pennsylvania-born players representing the Keystone State.
General admission tickets to all St. Petersburg Swans 2018 are just $10, and go on sale Monday, March 19. Season Memberships and a $25 Season Ticket to all Twilight Matches will also be available. All proceeds directly fund the growth of Australian Football in Florida.
Four ‘N Twenty meat pies are available hot and ready at all St.Petersburg Swans Twilight Home Games.
A full selection of St. Petersburg Swans custom team gear, Sydney Swans fan merchandise and AFL-licensed gear is also available in the Team Store.
SWANS, MLF GET BEHIND AUSBALL
The St. Petersburg Swans have joined Major League Footy in announcing a new initiative to leverage the Ausball format of non-contact, co-ed footy in an effort to enhance the recruitment and growth of Australian Rules Football in MLF youth, scholastic and collegiate programs.
Ausball provides a fun, standardized environment for participants of all ages to discover our great sport, while developing footy skills and teamwork. These skills are essential, should players choose to continue to play at a higher level.
Under the guidance of Ausball orignators Denis Ryan and Matt Bishop, Ausball has long been a part of club footy in the United States, and Major League Footy is very proud to make Ausball part of our development, education and youth programs going forward.
The Ausball Academy website will re-launch soon, while MLF clubs in St. Petersburg, Jacksonville and Los Angeles will immediately make the Ausball format part of their own clubs’ development efforts.
All MLF clubs will operate a league-wide Ausball program under standardize rules going forward.
Come have a kick, and stand by for more info – soon!
Major League Footy is pleased to announce that Four ‘N Twenty Bowl 2018 is coming to American Integrity Stadium at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, Saturday, March 31. Game time is TBA.
The Inaugural Four ‘N Twenty Bowl at American Integrity Stadium will feature MLF clubs battling for the Winter Season Premiership at the fabulous purpose-built soccer facility at Premier Sports Campus.
Four ‘N Twenty USA / USAAPI support the St. Petersburg Swans of Major League Footy, and the Swans offer hot Four ‘N Twenty pies at all 2018 Twilight Series home games.
American Integrity Insurance is one of Florida’s most respected and fastest-growing insurers, and has partnered with Premier Sports Campus on naming rights for the stadium at PSC.
Located in Lakewood Ranch (Sarasota/Bradenton), Premier Sports Campus is one of the nation’s leading multi-event sports facilities, and has hosted soccer, rugby and Australian Rules Football matches and tournaments, plus much more.
The 2018 Four ‘N Twenty Bowl will be broadcast live – broadcast details will be announced as soon as available.
SWANS CAST WATCHFUL EYES ON MLF CLASH
As 2016-17 Grand Finalists Suncoast Suns seek to climb their way out of contention for this season’s wooden spoon, the Swans (3-1, 12pts) will participate in a joint training session before tomorrow’s clash.
The Suncoast Suns (0-1) host Orlando Saturday, February 17 at 11 AM in St. Petersburg.
Currently sitting at 9th on the MLF ladder after a thorough 48-point lashing from contending StarfishFC January 13, the Suns can scratch all the way to 5th – and suddenly climb into the mix – with a record-leveling win tomorrow at Crescent Lake Common.
The Suns enter the contest with bottom-dwelling Orlando with an unsightly point differential, and will be without captain Kenneth Scheidt for this week’s match.
Orlando (0-1) is likewise coming off a massive 16.9.105 – 5.6.36 loss to the Swans early in the season, but both clubs still have time to right the ship and get back to level. Both Orlando and Suncoast will have two matches remaining in the 2017-18 Winter Season after tomorrow’s result – plenty of time to challenge St. Petersburg.
That effort begins tomorrow following a joint training session. Training begins at 10 AM, with the match following at 11 AM. Training drills will be streamed lived on Periscope (Twitter).
SWANS WELCOME ZOEBLUEPRINT
The St. Petersburg Swans are proud to welcome Zoe Blueprint as a 2018 Supporting Partner.
Based in downtown St. Petersburg’s burgeoning Innovation District, zbp is a tech start-up currently developing web and app solutions designed to change the student scheduling narrative.
The company is currently gearing up for launch, and the Swans are pleased to engage with forward-thinking companies in #DTSP!
CHECK OUT THIS WEEK’S ‘RUSHED POINTS’ PODCAST
SWANS WELCOME BODYARMOR FOR 2018
The St. Petersburg Swans are pleased to announce our 2018 partnership with Body Armor – More Natural – Better Sports Drink.
Body Armor is available nationally, including at Publix throughout Florida and the Southeast.
Body Armor is also available at all 2018 St. Petersburg Swans Home Games, and the partnership includes new advertising in the Swans’ game program, sidelines and across the club’s web properties.
Thanks to the nice folks at Body Armor and SevenUp/Snapple for supporting footy!
COMING SOON: 2018 FAST FOOTY CARNIVAL
With special thanks to the support of the SANFL, the St. Petersburg Swans will trial the SANFL’s ‘Fast Footy’ format in a special carnival event later in February 2018.
In addition to trialing this exciting new version of footy – which the SANFL will officially unveil this weekend at Norwood Oval – we’ll have great Aussie-themed vendors and fun under the Florida sun.
DETAILS – DATE AND VENUE will be announced February 16, 2018 – stay tuned. This is a one-time special event that may become an annual carnival, so let’s make it a success!
We’d like to thank the South Australia National Football League for their support.
AFLX, FOOTY 9s + MORE – THIS WEEK’S ‘RUSHED POINTS’
AGGRESSIVE SWANS TURN BACK PHILADELPHIA, 127-95
A monster second quarter helped the St. Petersburg Swans to a 32-point decision, Saturday at Crescent Lake Common, besting a Greater Northern Philadelphia ‘State of Origin’ representative side 127-95.
In the season’s highest-scoring match to date, the Bloods – propelled by veteran midfielder and former Sandringham trainee Jason Blackbourn, promising rookie tall Jesse Hayes and the always-steady Aaron Crittenden and Austen Kugler – posted a devastating 6.5 onslaught in a furious fifteen minutes that seemingly all but decided the affair.
Nick Whiteside attempts to evade Philadelphia-area native Pat Bilder in Saturday’s debut of the Greater Northern Philly representative team.
Philadelphia-region natives Dustin Jones, Pat Bilder and Dionne Jones regrouped at the big break, however, closing to within ten points early in the final stanza.
The aggressive play in midfield created opportunities for the Green, with Kyle Roun, Kenneth Scheidt and David Senko all notching multiple majors in the second half.
A Blackbourn supergoal and a series of neutralizing 70-yard clearances from Jake Keglor as the clock became a factor iced the affair.
The Kangas (2-0) will have an opportunity to respond Saturday, February 10, when they host Pasco BlackDog in an 11 AM start at Crescent Lake.
RACE TO WINTER FLAG TIGHTENS AS FOOTY RETURNS
With three new recruits making their Florida footy debuts following the Holiday Break, the St. Petersburg Starfish overcame a tight first half contest to run out 66-18 winners over the hosting Suncoast Suns Saturday in St. Pete.
The result puts Starfish FC level in the won-loss column with the Swans, who remain atop the 2017-18 Winter Premiership Season table on percentages.
With blustery game conditions after an extended joint training, a low-scoring affair seemed in the cards, as the two sides traded blows throughout the first 15 minutes, with the ‘Fish up 24-18 at the break.
The second half would tell another story, as the Suns became the first side in MLF competition to be shut-out over the course the second half, with St. Pete notching seven majors to cruise to the finish line.
Major League Footy action continues January 20, as the Swans (2-0) host the Lakeland Tigers (0-1)
MLF ANNOUNCES CHAMPIONSHIP VENUE
MLF CHAMPIONSHIP GAME COMING TO AMERICAN INTEGRITY STADIUM –
Major League Footy has announced that the 2018 MLF Championship Game will be held Saturday, March 24, 2018 at American Integrity Stadium at Premier Sports Campus.
The state-of-the art soccer-specific stadium is located in Lakewood Ranch (Bradenton/Sarasota), Florida, and is convenient to the entire West Central and SW Florida regions.
The 2018 Major League Footy Championship Game will match the two top-seeded teams from the MLF First Division, based on results and percentages.
The match will be the first-ever footy match at the main stadium at Premier Sports Campus, which also hosted the USAFL National Tournament in 2016.
PSC hosts hundreds of sporting events annually, with over 200,000 visitors to the acclaimed campus participating or attending events yearly.
American Integrity Insurance (AI) is a premier Florida-based property insurance provider and official naming rights partner of the Premier Sports Campus stadium facility, which was christened in October 2017.
LIBERO, GLADOVIC RETURN FOR SWANS BROADCASTS
The St. Petersburg Swans welcome back the radio broadcast team of Rich Libero and Miro Gladovic for the 2017-18 Major League Footy Winter Season.
With former MLS commentator Libero (play-by-play) bringing an American perspective, and long-time footy exec and personality Gladovic (color commentary) supplying an Aussie’s view of the action, the duo will call all five St. Pete Swans twilight matches, beginning November 18, when the Red and White host Orlando in St. Petersburg.
SWANS RETURN TO TRAINING AS PRE-SEASON OPENS
With the 2017-18 Major League Footy winter season on the horizon, the St. Petersburg Swans return to training this week, as Senior Coach Greg Bray looks to lead his charges to a repeat of last year’s winter premiership success.
With the club having aligned its primary schedule to October-March, the Major League Footy circuit takes on new importance in its second season, as the Swans will tackle clubs in an 18-week schedule in a race for the MLF flag.
Major League Footy is presented in part by Aussie Sports USA.
All St. Petersburg Swans trainings and practices are always free, and are open to co-ed players of all ages and skill level, and Major League Footy player memberships are free for the 2017-’18 season.
The club trains weekly on the Common at Crescent Lake in St. Petersburg.