The Steelheads traveled to Austin, Texas last weekend for the 2013 USAFL Nationals Tournament. The team entered the tournament with high hopes of winning a Division 3 National Championship to cap off a year of strong growth and development for the club. 26 players made the trip to face off against San Diego, Houston, and Kansas City.
The Steelheads first lost a nail-biter on Saturday morning to the San Diego Lions by less than a goal, 3.1.19 to 3.4.22. The boys rebounded in the afternoon as they took on the Houston Lonestars. The game was a tight affair until well into the second half, but the Steelheads’ overwhelming pressure on the ball helped them to pull away late for a 5.4.34 to 2.5.17 victory, and put them back into the chase to make the Division 3 final. On Sunday morning Houston defeated San Diego, meaning the Steelheads could make the final with a win over Kansas City, but would need a significant margin of victory to improve their scoring percentage. It was a hard-fought game from the first bounce, with the Power opening the scoring with a goal, before the Steelheads fought back to take the lead. At the end of the first half, the scores were tied. The Steelheads regained the lead in the second half and pressed their advantage, winning 5.5.35 to 3.3.21. However Houston finished with a better scoring percentage, and advanced to the D3 final ahead of the Steelheads.
Despite narrowly missing the final, it was the Steelheads’ best showing at Nationals yet, and a great effort from the team. Check out the full video replays of all three games below.