20 Apr, 2019
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY 2018-19 PREMIERSHIP SEASON - PRESENTED BY AUSSIE SPORTS USA
When the St. Petersburg Swans tangle with the Florida Lions in this weekend’s 2018-19 Major League Footy Championship Final, the result will mark not only the circuit’s biggest game – it will also put an emphatic end to the first full season of play under the MLF Aussie Fives format.
The proprietary format and game play system – currently Patent Pending in the United States, with a license for international protection also pending – and developed in Florida in over 140 ‘proof of concept’ and trial matches – is a distinctly Americanized take on Australian football.
Originally designed to meet the specific needs in the Major League Footy launch market, Aussie Fives began as a hybrid of various initiatives designed for the international expansion of Australian Rules Football to non-traditional markets.
From there, and as Major League Footy moved to become the only independent, self-funded venture aimed specifically at leveraging the sport towards a sustainable enterprise following accepted American semi-professional and pro sports best practices, MLF game play and business aims evolved together.
Having evolved a proprietary variation of the sport aimed first at its own core market, facilities and player universe, the competition continues down a growth pathway, with long-anticipated clubs in Southern California and Texas expected to take the field under MLF Aussie Fives rules in 2020 and beyond.
This Saturday’s MLF Championship Final, then, is a definitive statement that the format – and the business model – represent the best pathway for the growth of competitive Australian Rules Football as a serious entry onto the American sports scene.
ST. PETE’S JONES GANG PREPS FOR FINALS 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 in Largo, Florida is 7 PM EDT
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
LIONS BRING TOP OFFENSE INTO FINAL
Propelled in part by a dominating performance in a 182-76 win Preliminary Final win over the Lakeland Tigers, Kyle Roun and the Florida Lions enter this weekend’s Major League Footy Championship Final with the circuit’s top-scoring offense.
Tallying 694 points over the course of ten regular season games – plus, a lone playoff match – the Lions record-tying performance last Saturday night puts an exclamation point on a campaign-long narrative that saw the Leos battle their way up the ladder with a late-season surge.
Now, about to face off with the ladder-leading St. Petersburg Swans – also the competition’s leader on percentages – Florida will look to maximize the nuances of the friendly confines of the rectangular ground at Largo Sports Complex.
In two seasons as the home of the Major League Footy #footynightinflorida series of Saturday night games, the 120-yard, fast-track turf surface has proven to be a launch pad for scoring, as evidenced by the Lions’ four supergoals in a 106-point over Lakeland in the Preliminary.
While the Swans are likely to counter with capable scorers of their own, the Florida Lions might be emerging as the team of destiny on their run to the flag.
Time – and the scoreboard – will surely tell the tale.
Despite a record-setting crash-out in the MLF Preliminary Final, the 2018-19 campaign saw many positives for the Lakeland Tigers.
As the side’s roster coalesced into a unit around American footy veteran Patrick Bilder on way to a late-season run up the ladder to the #2 seed, the Tigers established an expanded footy presence in Central Florida.
Posting a 7-3 record (28 points), the Tigers concluded the winter Premiership with a solid run, unfortunately punctuated with a shock loss to a surging Florida Lions side in Saturday’s Preliminary.
After conceding a league record 99 points in the first half, the Tigers regrouped to make the second half a much close contest, just too little and too late to turn the tide.
As Florida footy moves into the 2019 MLF Florida Derby season, the Tigers will look to continue growing the Central Florida side, with a strong likelihood of playing for a return to the playoff finals in 2019-20.
LIONS DEVOUR TIGERS IN PRELIM ROMP
The Florida Lions (6-5) have advanced to the Major League Footy Championship Final, having dispatched the Lakeland Tigers (7-4), 186-72 in Saturday night’s Preliminary at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
The tally also marked the season-high score in any MLF match and a record-setting first half that saw the Lions post a whopping 99 points.
With Aaron Crittenden, Kyle Roun and Tom Mathew leading the charge, Florida raced to a 57-6 lead after the first stanza and cruised to an 87-point margin at the big break.
Showing signs of life after intermission, Dustin Jones and Ken Scheidt sparked something of a resurgence for the Tigers after a dreary first half, but their fate had long since been decided.
The Tigers did notch a 47-24 positive margin in the final frame, as the humid conditions helped wear down the hard-charging Lions offense.
With the win, the Lions – the #3 seed coming into Saturday’s affair – advance to take on the league-leading St. Petersburg Swans (9-1) in the 2018-19 Major League Footy Championship Final, Saturday, April 20 at 7 PM.
IT’S WIN AND IN FOR TIGERS
Entering the final weekend of the Major League Footy 2018-19 Winter Premiership Season at 5-3 (20 points), the Lakeland Tigers have a simple mantra: Win and they’re in.
Currently moored in the fifth spot on the MLF ladder, the Tigers can jump the pack and move all the way to the #2 seed with just win from two this Saturday vs. the Orlando Kangas.
The ‘Roos (1-7, 4 points), on the other hand, can salvage a bit of a lackluster 2018-19 campaign by playing spoilers in denying the Tigers a berth in the MLF Preliminary Final.
With the Florida Lions, Suncoast Suns and St. Petersburg Starfish FC all level at 5-5, the Tigers simply need one positive result in Saturday’s double-header at neutral ground St. Petersburg to claim the second spot…but a sweep at the hands of the Kangas would knock Lakeland out on percentages.
Only the Top Three sides on the ladder qualify for the MLF Finals, based on ten head-to-head matches in a season running October-March.
As the St. Petersburg Swans (9-1, 36 points) have already clinched the minor premiership, the remaining battle is for the the #2 and #3 seeds, who will meet in the Preliminary Final next month.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK 17
Lakeland Tigers v. Orlando Kangas
Saturday, March 30 – Game One – 11 AM
‘FISH NEED SWEEP IN POST-SEASON CHASE
Clinging to faint hopes to reach the Major League Footy Finals, St. Petersburg Starfish FC (3-5, 12 points) enter today’s matinee double-header against a downtrodden Kangas (1-5, 4 points) side, with the ‘Fish needing a sweep of the affair in order to avoid elimination.
While the Kangas can only hope to play spoilers this week – and next weekend against the 4th-seeded Tigers – St. Pete’s elder side find themselves having post two big wins against Orlando to have any semblance of a post-season chance.
Their poor (75%) percentage – and 91 point scoring deficit – mean the ‘Fish essentially must post blowout wins in both ends of today’s twin-bill in order to have any path to following up their Summer 2018 flag with a 2018-19 MLF Championship Final appearance.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK 17
Orlando Kangas v. St. Petersburg Starfish FC
Saturday, March 23 – 11 AM
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.
TWILIGHT CLASH CRUCIAL FOR SUNS, FISH
Ball-up Game One of the twin-bill is 7 PM.
Currently in 5th place on the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season ladder, Suncoast (3-5) in the most precarious position heading into the MLF Playoff run home, as this weekend’s clash closes out the Suns’ slate.
Any negative result in Saturday’s proceedings will most assuredly deny Suncoast a chance at securing a playoff berth.
Starfish FC (3-3) – winners of three on trot with four matches remaining – can see themselves continue their charge off the mat, should they sweep this weekend’s affair.
An SFC sweep would push them past Lakeland and into the third playoff slot – and could potentially push the ‘Fish all the way from #5 to #2 on the ladder, with two games remaining.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY #FOOTYNIGHTINFLORIDA
Suncoast Suns v. St. Petersburg Starfish FC
Saturday, March 16 – 7 PM
Largo Sports Complex, Largo, FL.
BYE-THE-BYE: ST. PETE CLINCHES 1st AT SPRING BREAK
Paced by six super goals from top gun Ben McIntosh (Labrador Tigers/AFL Queensland), the St. Petersburg Swans swept the latest installment of the MLF #footynightinflorida series of Twilight matches.
Game Two on the evening saw St. Petersburg thump the Kangas in emphatic fashion, running out 126.96.36.199 – 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 188.8.131.52 – 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 the Lakeland Tigers (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.
Game One saw the Tigers (5-3, 20 points) build an early 19-1 advantage before a furious Kangas rally found the sides knotted at 47 heading into the break.
Lakeland overcame a late Ben McIntosh super goal – his third of the affair – in squeaking out a 103-98 final tally.
That result was only the beginning of the tension, however, as the Tigers would need a late major to run out 51-50 winners in Game Two.
McIntosh – who will play his final footy in the States before returning home to Queensland – notched an unlikely five supers on the day, as the sides combined for 302 total points, setting a new MLF scoring high-water mark.
With the result, Lakeland rises into prime position in the race to the Major League Footy playoffs, moving 8 points ahead of 4th seed Starfish FC.
The Kangas, meanwhile, will now look to this Saturday’s twin-bill with the table-topping St. Petersburg Swans in an effort to get their season back on track.
At 1-3 (4 points), the Kangas have the benefit of six games remaining (including this weekend’s tilt) in their drive to stay relevant on the campaign.
Major League Footy is pleased to announce the support of Nest Houseware as a 2019 promotional partner.
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Their 25 oz., no-leak, no-spill sports bottles are child-safe and keep your beverages hot or cold – perfect for a day out on the footy ground!
Now, footy fans can save 15% off their Nest Houseware order on amazon.com by entering the coupon code ‘majorleague’ at checkout (Or, just click on the Nest Houseware banner ad to the right on this page).
The St. Petersburg Swans – the founding and flagship side of Major League Footy – have released the team’s official app for Android devices – now available for free download on Google Play.
Staying Up To Date with Aussie Rules Football in Tampa Bay is easy with the St. Pete Swans app, which features Team News, Player Interviews, Match Reports, Fixtures and Results, 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!
TABLE MAY TURN ON SATURDAY TANGLE
And, although the St. Petersburg Swans are seemingly comfortable at the top of the ladder with a 7-1 record (28 points), St. Pete’s 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, Saturday.
Orlando will counter with their own contingent of Orlando-area players, looking to make their own mark on the competition.
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 St. Petersburg can only watch and wait – but the table may be set for a battle next Saturday under the lights at Largo Sports Complex.
Needing at least one positive result to stay relevant in the race for 2018-’19 Major League Footy Premiership Season playoffs, the Suncoast Suns parlayed a massive comeback to take Game One by a score of 49-46 in Saturday’s showdown with a brave Tampa Bay Bombers side.
The Bombers, who came in at just 2-6 on the season, raced out to a 38-11 advantage at the halftime break, only to see their fortunes reversed in the second half, as Suncoast put up a brutal 38-8 trouncing in the period.
While Game Two – played in humid, sultry conditions – would see Tampa Bay bounce back to claim a salving 44-36 win, the proceedings see the Suns stay solidly in contention at 3-5 (12 points), with two matches in hand as they seek to climb up from the #4 seed on the Major League Footy ladder.
Tampa Bay falls to a disappointing 3-7 mark on the campaign, and are all-but eliminated for playoff contention.
In the Major League Footy playoff format, the Top Three seeds on the ladder at the end of the Premiership season move on to the playoffs, with the #2 and #3 sides meeting in a preliminary.
The Major League Footy Winter Championship Final will be played Saturday, April 20, 2019.
The Lakeland Tigers bravely clawed their way back from an early 34-point deficit, scraping out a 72-71 Game One win over the high-flying Florida Lions, Saturday, February 2 at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
That result helped ease the sting of a 74-46 Game Two Lions victory that left both sides happy with a split result on the evening, as Florida remains in the #2 position on the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season ladder with a record of 4-4 (16 points).
The Tigers’ Game One win also moves Lakeland into the #3 seed with 8 weeks remaining on the campaign.
The Top Three sides on the Premiership Season ladder qualify for the Major League Footy Championship Finals.
With Dustin Jones making his first 2019 appearance for the yellow and black, the Tigers roared back from an early series of body blows in Game One, as Tom Mathew and Kyle Roun helped the Lions successfully force game play, pinning Lakeland in, and consistently following up with accurate kicking.
Jones and tall Adham Makki turned the tables in a second half played in heavy – but thankfully, brief – rain showers, as Lakeland ran out shock one-point winners.
Game Two, however, saw Florida return to their earlier form, en route to a 28-point win punctuated by supergoals from Mathew and Roun.
Major League Footy Week Twelve action sees the Suncoast Suns (2-2, 8 points) battle for their own chance to potentially climb into playoff position, as they tussle with St. Petersburg Starfish FC (1-3, 4 points), Saturday, February 9 in St. Pete.
TIGES, LIONS SET TO TANGLE UNDER LIGHTS
A spot in the Major League Footy Championship Finals Series could be on the line when the Florida Lions (3-3, 12 points) host the Lakeland Tigers (2-2, 8 points) in a twilight double-header of Aussie Fives footy, Saturday night at Largo Sports Complex in Largo, Florida.
Ball up for Game One is 7 PM Eastern.
Should Florida sweep Saturday night’s proceedings, they’ll stand clear of the rest of the pack, while closing the gap with St. Petersburg, who currently lead the ladder with an impressive 28 points.
Meanwhile, the Tigers come in with a chance to overtake the Lions with a sweep, while a split would see Lakeland at least gain hold of the third spot on the table.
In the MLF Championship Finals format, only the top three sides advance, with the #2 and #3 seeds meeting in a Preliminary Final. The winner of that playoff match then moves on to meet the #1 seed in the Final.
With St. Petersburg standing at 7-1 – but with only a double-header vs. the Kangas remaining on their slate – the Lions would seem well-positioned to close that distance in a flash, should they take the broom to Lakeland Saturday.
The Tigers could be buttressed by the return of skipper Pat Bilder in Saturday’s action.
The American footy veteran has missed the past three weeks of MLF action, dealing with injuries and an unrelated illness.
The Lions will counter with the return on Queensland gun Ben McIntosh, expected back after a European sojourn.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY #FOOTYNIGHTINFLORIDA
Florida Lions (3-3) v. Lakeland Tigers (2-2)
Saturday, February 2, 2019 – 7 PM
Largo Sports Complex, Largo, Florida
LEOS, ‘FISH IN OZ DAY CLASH
The Florida Lions will look to secure a firm hold on the #2 spot on the Major League Footy ladder, when they meet winless Starfish FC Saturday, January 26, in the MLF Australia Day Double-Header in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Entering the contest at 2-2 (8 points), a Lions sweep would help Florida make headway in securing a berth in the MLF Finals, while the Summer Premier ‘Fish come in looking for their first win on the season.
With both sides looking up at a St. Petersburg Swans side that has run off seven wins in eight games to run away with the top spot to date, there’s plenty of time to make a move, as the Swans have only two matches remaining on the season.
Saturday’s matinee double-header of MLF Aussie Fives football at Crescent Lake Common in St. Petersburg will be followed by an Australia Day fete, and Major League Footy play returns to Largo Sports Complex February 2, 2019, when the Lions tangle with the Lakeland Tigers at 7 PM.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY AUSTRALIA DAY DOUBLE-HEADER
Florida Lions (2-2) v. St. Petersburg Starfish FC (0-2)
Saturday, January 26, 2019
Game One Ball-Up: 11 AM Eastern
SWANS TAKE TWO FROM BRAVE BOMBERS
After a razor-tight Game One that saw five lead changes before a 46-43 St. Petersburg Swans win over a gallant Tampa Bay Bombers side, the Swans 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. Petersburg, now 7-1 (28 points).
Tampa Bay dropped to 2-6 (8 points) on the season.
Both sides have two games remaining as the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season makes its turn to the home stretch.
Tom Mathew and Dustin Jones led the St. Petersburg charge, while Robbie Scarallo, Curtis Speller and Adham Makki spearheaded a spirited effort for the hard-luck Bombers.
St. Pete 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.
#FOOTYNIGHTINFLORIDA SIZZLES AS EAST COAST SHIVERS
With the first ‘polar vortex’ of the season dropping temperatures to well below zero across the Eastern USA, the St. Petersburg Swans will host the upstart Tampa Bay Bombers in Major League Footy action returns with a Twilight Series Double-Header, Saturday, January 19.
Ball-up for Game One at Largo Sports Complex Stadium is 7 PM, with the starlit-Florida evening expected to be clear, with temps in the low 70s (F).
St. Pete enters the contest atop the ladder with a record of 5-1, while the Bombers come in at 2-4.
In a scheduling quirk, the two sides met last weekend in a reschedule of a December clash, with the Swans battling back in Game Two to salvage a split in the twinbill.
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.
ST. PETE EARNS SPLIT; STAYS CLEAR OF PACK
Returning to action after an arduously-long 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 Tampa Bay Bombers side, January 12 at Crescent Lake Common in St. Pete, Florida.
With a Tom Mathew 10-pointer giving the Bombers (2-4, 8 points) the difference they needed in a 184.108.40.206 – 220.127.116.11 first game victory, Florida’s version of the scrappy ‘Same Olds’ also held strong in the first half of Game Two, scratching out a 1-point lead at the break.
From there, the St. Pete 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, 18.104.22.168 – 0.2.8.20.
Queensland gun Ben McIntosh notched three super goals for St. Petersburg on the day, with Bomber debutant Josh Wurst notably recording a brave first match.
The result keeps the Bloods (5-1, 20 points) comfortably atop the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season ladder, 12 points clear of the pack.
In a bit of scheduling quirk, Saturday’s twin-bill was a reschedule of a December 15 contest called by thunderstorms…and will also see the Swans and Bombers face-off again next week (January 19) , as #footy returns to Largo Sports Complex Stadium in Largo, Florida, for the first Twilight double-header of 2019.
The two sides last met under the lights on July 14, 2018, and saw the Bombers storm back with two majors in the last minute of play to steal a 2-point victory.
Major League Footy is the self-funded, independent competition of Aussie Fives Football in the United States.
Games are played on an American Football (gridiron) field (100 yards x 53 yards), with five players on the ground and up to five in interchange.
The Major League Footy Premiership Season is October-March, with Finals in April, culminating with a Championship Final April 20. 2019.
MLF MOVES TO PATENT AUSSIE FIVES
Major League Footy has filed an application to patent the MLF Aussie Fives Game System and Method of Play with the US Patent and Trademark Office.
The Utility filing of the abstract document, describing specifics of the Game System, field dimensions and demarcations – as well as the Method of Play which differentiates Major League Footy, and specifically, MLF Aussie Fives from all other forms of Australian Rules Football – is the first step in a US Patent Grant, and the MLF Aussie Fives Game System and Method of Play is protected as ‘Patent Pending’ during the application, review and Grant period.
The application (S/N 16192149) is filed under 35 USC 111(a).
In development since 2016, and with over 130 proof-of concept and trial matches conducted in 2016-2018, the MLF Aussie Fives concept grew out of the specific requirements of Major League Footy, with an emphasis on delivering a fast-paced game that preserves the best of Australian Football – while incorporating game-play elements best suited for the American players and audiences.
Further emphasis is placed on the ability to leverage MLF Aussie Fives in the Major League Footy business model, while demonstrating a working game play system.
MLF Aussie Fives is both flexible and scalable – and well-conducive to the growth of the sport in North America.
A notable example of a specific version of a sport being granted a US Patent is Arena Football, patented in 1987 as a distinct version of American (gridiron) football, both for its unique field configuration and specialized rules adaptations.
STORMY WEATHER POSTPONES SWANS – BOMBERS
A series of winter thunderstorms associated with an incoming cold front, bringing overnight heavy rains that continued on thru the early morning hours have forced the postponement of today’s St. Petersburg Swans v. Tampa Bay Bombers twin-bill.
The double-header will be re-scheduled.
SUNCOAST LOOKS TO TAME TIGERS
Fresh off a razor-close split with the Florida Lions last weekend, the Suncoast Suns (1-1, 4 pts) head into Week Six of the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season with a chance to make a ladder move before the Holiday break.
To do that, they’ll have to tame a Lakeland Tigers (1-1, 4 pts) squad that’s currently clinging to the #4 seed by the slimmest of margins.
With just a 17-point advantage over the Suns in point differential, the Tigers come into the weekend’s action with just the sixth best scoring offense (88 points in two games) in the Winter Circuit.
Suncoast is a shade better (92 points), but saw last weekend’s Game One win unable to keep the Suns in a positive point differential.
The Lions’ big Game Two win last Saturday – which also pulled the Leos into the #2 spot on the table – left the Suns at (-15) in PD, third worst in the competition through five weeks.
Should either side sweep this weekend’s proceedings, they’ll see themselves displace the Lions in settling into the two-spot as the circuit’s month-long Holiday break looms.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK SIX:
Suncoast Suns v. Lakeland Tigers
Saturday, December 8, 2018 – Game One – 11 AM
CAN LIONS DIM SUNS?
The Florida Lions (1-1, 4 pts) will look to make a move on the ladder, when they take on the homestanding Suncoast Suns in Major League Footy action, Saturday, December 1, in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The Suns will be making their first appearance in league play as, while the Lions are coming off a double-header split that has them in 4th place on the ladder.
With conditions expected to be humid and around 80 (F), both sides are likely to be taxed – especially after last week’s league-wide ‘Bye’ Week for the Thanksgiving Holiday.
A split or sweep of the matinee twin-bill would push the Lions up to second place, while the Suns can make their bow into the #2 seed with a sweep of their own.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK FIVE
Florida Lions v. Suncoast Suns
Saturday, December 1, 2018
Game One: 11 AM
BLOODS SUPERS QUASH BOMBERS
The St. Petersburg Swans leveraged five 10-point ‘super goals’ – four from Queensland gun Ben McIntosh – to overcome a brave effort by the Tampa Bay Bombers, running out winners on both ends of a double-header in Major League Footy Week Four, Saturday in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Take away those 10-pointers, however, and coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott know there’s work to do to get the Swans playing up to their ability.
Without the supers, Tampa Bay would have come away with a 9-point win in Game One, ultimately chalked up to St. Pete, 22.214.171.124 – 5.4.34.
Game Two followed an eerily similar narrative, with the Bombers winning much of the action, only to fall victim to the Swans’ long-distance attack, 126.96.36.199 – 188.8.131.52.
On a ground that warmed up fast from a cool start, action also got chippy during Saturday’s proceedings.
American footy veteran Patrick Bilder became the first-ever MLF send-off in Game One, disputing adjudication of the kick-out rule.
Bilder was permitted to return for Game Two, nearly leading the Bombers to a come-back in the second half, before St. Petersburg pulled away.
After a scheduled ‘BYE’ week during the Thanksgiving Holiday in the US, MLF Week Five sees the Suncoast Suns (0-0) tangle with the Florida Lions (1-1, 4 pts), Saturday, December 1 in a special 3 PM start.
MLF COMING TO AUSTRALIA’S BarTV SPORTS
Footy fans across Australia – and the world – will soon have a chance to experience fast, furious and ‘Distinctively American’ Major League Footy action.
In an exclusive arrangement, Major League Footy today announced that pioneering Australian hybrid sports broadcaster BarTV Sports has secured production and streaming rights to a package of 14 matches throughout the MLF 2018-19 Premiership Season.
The arrangement will include a total of six regular-season ‘double-headers’ – games played as two 10-minute halves – plus the MLF Preliminary Final (April 13, 2019) and MLF Championship Final (April 20, 2019), each played as four 10-minute quarters.
Regular season matches, as well as the Preliminary Final, will be played in the Tampa Bay region of Florida. The 2018-19 Major League Footy Championship Final will be played in the Miami/Ft. Lauderdale metro region.
The St. Petersburg Swans broadcast team of Rich Libero (play by play) and Miro Gladovic (color commentary) will pair up for many MLF matches coming to BarTV Sports.
Both are among the Top 12 broadcast markets in the United States.
BarTV Sports broadcasts Rugby Union, Rugby League, Soccer, Netball and other sports across an innovative streaming platform and pub/club network, and is also the Official Broadcast Partner of the NEAFL.
Major League Footy is an independent competition of ‘distinctly American’ Aussie Rules Football, with a premiership season running October through March.
The full slate of Major League Footy 2018-19 matches coming live to BarTV Sports will be announced in the coming days
SWANS v BOMBERS KICKS OFF THANKSGIVING WEEK
The St. Pete Swans hope not to be on the Tampa Bay Bombers menu when the sides clash this Saturday in a matinee twin-bill in St. Petersburg.
With the Bombers (1-1, 4 pts) having battled off the mat to earn a crucial early-season split with the Kangas last weekend, the Swans (2-0, 8 points) will be looking to pull out the stops to remain undefeated and atop the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season ladder.
They’ll have to do that on the season’s first ‘chilly’ (by Florida standards, anyway), weather. Game-time ‘feels like temperatures are expected to be near 50 degrees F. That’s roughly 57 degrees colder than conditions for the September 29 Summer Final.
The final match before the Thanksgiving Bye Week (November 24 – no games scheduled) could see the Bombers leap into the top spot with a win…or see the Swans move away from the pack of a crowded ladder.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK FOUR
St. Petersburg Swans v. Tampa Bay Bombers
Saturday, November 17, 2018
Game One: 11 AM
KANGAS-BOMBERS SPLIT CROWDS LADDER
A strong bounce-back performance saw the Tampa Bay Bombers reverse a disastrous Game One rout at the hands of the Orlando Kangas, salvaging a split of the matinee double-header, Saturday in St. Petersburg.
In unusually steamy conditions – even for Florida in November – the Kangas bludgeoned Tampa Bay in Game One, posting a 62-10 result in their first match of the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season.
Game Two, however, was a virtual reverse-image of the first contest, as the Bombers took a 32-11 lead into the break on their way to a 66-25 decision.
That result has created a crowd at the top end of the MLF ladder, with only the Week One sweep of Starfish FC at the hands of the St. Petersburg Swans creating any movement away from the pack of four sides now at 1-1 on the young campaign.
With defensive stalwart sidelined Kenneth Scheidt sidelined with a pre-game injury, Tampa Bay came out at a defensive disadvantage, especially with a rookie-laden roster.
That opened the floodgates for the Kangas attack, which raced to a 40-7 lead after the first stanza in Game One.
The Bombers will have an opportunity to build on a strong recovery in Game Two next week, when they face the ladder-leading Swans, Saturday in St. Petersburg.
Game One will ball-up at 11 AM EST in the final action before the Thanksgiving weekend bye.
BOMBERS SEEK FLYING START
With a chance to open the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season with back-to-back sweeps of the Orlando Kangas (November 10) and St. Petersburg Swans (November 17), the Tampa Bay Bombers are looking for a rocket-fueled opener to the new campaign.
After a successful 6-3 summer season that saw the side into the MLF Finals in their first run through the circuit, the Bombers and owner Miro Gladovic benefit from an early-season schedule quirk that could push them right to the top from the start.
Of course, they’ll have to get through a very strong Kangas side that now features a core group of Orlando-area players, eager to put a 2-5 summer record in the rear view.
Should the Bombers get past Orlando unblemished, they’ll then see the Swans on November 17, with the winner putting a vice grip on the #1 spot before the Thanksgiving bye week.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK THREE:
Tampa Bay Bombers v. Orlando Kangas
Saturday, November 10
Game One: 11 AM EST
Major League Footy has announced the launch of Major League Cricket, a competition of ‘Big Bash’-style cricket in Central Florida.
The competition will launch in 2019, with an April-October season schedule.
As a result of joining the American Cricket Federation and USA Cricket, the management group of Major League Footy and Major League Cricket has reorganized as Australian-American Major Leagues, Inc., as a holding company for competitions in both sports.
The launch of Major League Cricket is a direct response to the interest of Major League Footy’s Australian ex-patriot members, who sought the inclusion of an active cricket competition in the advancement of sport and cultural exchange.
The 2019 Major League Cricket competition will immediately follow the conclusion of the 2018-19 Major League Footy Premiership Season.
The new competition’s flagship side, the St. Petersburg Swamp Monsters, will assume a leadership position in the launch of Major Like Cricket, specifically in the Tampa Bay metro area and West Central Florida.
BOMBERS-KANGAS CLASH IN MLF WEEK 3
Week Three of the Major League Footy 2018-19 Winter Premiership Season sees the Tampa Bay Bombers hosting the Orlando Kangas in a matinee double-header, Saturday in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Game One sees an 11 AM EST ball up.
Both sides are seeing their first action of the October – April season, and the Bombers will be looking to build on a successful summer campaign that saw the side debut with a 6-3 mark and a berth in the Preliminary Final.
The highlight of the Bombers’ inaugural campaign continues to be the squad’s 110-100 last-minute shock win over the St. Petersburg Swans back in July.
Meanwhile, the Kangas slumped to a 2-5 record on the summer – one that saw the Shiboners outscored by a league-worst 230 points – but come into the 2018-19 Premiership season with an infusion of optimism in the assignment of four Orlando-area players to a set roster core.
TIGERS RALLY; EARN SPLIT vs LIONS
After jumping out to a 15-point lead, the Tiger defense showed strains in containing a free-wheeling Lions side that featured rookie Michael Taylor at full forward.
With Taylor earning his bones in collecting crumbs from constant Florida pressure, the Lions rallied for a 23-point advantage in the second frame, earning a 54-36 win.
Those results were nearly reversed in Game Two, however, as the Tigers put it all together, with running out by twenty for a 52-32 decision.
The result sees both sides pick up a crucial four points on the 2018-19 ladder, with the Tigers moving into the second slot with an ever-so-slim 2 point advantage over Florida in early days.
MLF WELCOMES LIFE STORAGE AS 2018-19 PRESENTING PARTNER
Major League Footy is pleased to welcome Life Storage, Inc., as a Presenting Partner for the 2018-19 MLF Winter Premiership Season.
One of the largest self-storage companies in the world, Life Storage operates approximately 750 facilities across the United States, and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol LSI.
Employing over 1,600 in 28 states across the country, Life Storage is a customer-centric, innovative and technology-driven innovator in the self storage industry.
The company’s partnership with Major League Footy will see field-side branding at all MLF venues, web advertising across Major League Footy and team web properties and social media, and advertising in team print publication.
LIONS-TIGERS SET FOR WEEK 2 TILT
With both sides entering the contest with a chance to catch the St. Petersburg Swans at the top of the ladder, the pressure is already on the circuit’s two newest sides.
Launching during the 2018 summer season with a boost from the Palm Beach Currumbin Lions, Florida marched to a 4-4 (16 pts) record in the inaugural campaign, largely fueled by standout efforts from Queeslanders Nick Whiteside and Ben McIntosh.
The Lakeland Tigers (2-5, 8 pts) fielded a competitive side under skipper Pat Bilder, only seeing a downturn in their fortunes late in the circuit’s summer competition.
Those slates are now wiped clean as the Lions and Tigers enter 2018-19 winter season, both sides having hope remaining competitive straight through to April.
Major League Footy is the independent competition of 7-a-side Australian Football in the United States. Games are played on a rectangular field, typically 120 yards x 60 yards, and with traditional Australian Rules goal and behind posts.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK TWO: FLORIDA LIONS v. LAKELAND TIGERS
Saturday, November 3, 2018. Game One: 11 AM EST.
The St. Petersburg Swans are off to a 2-0 start, having turned back an early offensive outburst from summer premiers Starfish FC, getting the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season underway, Saturday in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The ‘Fish 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 half, as the Swans turned the tide with a 220.127.116.11 response, 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.
At 2-0, the Swans will look to continue Saturday’s momentum, when they next retake the ground for a November 17 double-header vs the Tampa Bay Bombers, while Week Two of the Major League Footy 2018-19 Premiership Season will see the Florida Lions tangle with the Lakeland Tigers, Saturday, November 3.
#THISISOURSEASON: MLF ACTION KICKS OFF SATURDAY
The opening salvo of what promises to be a spirited ‘cross-town’ rivalry kicks of the 2018-19 Major League Footy Winter Premiership Season, as the St. Petersburg Swans meet Starfish FC in a matinee twin-bill, Saturday in St. Pete.
Ball-up for Game One is 11 AM.
A rematch of the summer Championship Final sees the sides reset with a clean slate, and each with a core group of rostered players.
Starfish FC finished the circuit’s summer campaign on a rampage, winning five on the trot to get off the mat – and romp all the way to the flag.
The Swans will be looking to build off a promising, but ultimately frustrating, slate.
Despite finishing as runners-up with a 7-4 mark, devastating defensive breakdowns – especially late – plagued the Bloods all summer.
St. Petersburg saw last-minute leads slip away in losses to the Tampa Bay Bombers (110-100, July 14) and Starfish FC (120-114, September 29), both times at the hands of opposition ‘supergoals’.
With game-time ‘feels-like’ temperatures expected to be right around 80 F (30-degrees cooler than last time out), conditions should be much more ‘footy-friendly’ than Florida’s intense summer.
Saturday’s Season Opener officially marks the competition’s move to an October – April Premiership Season, and is also the circuit’s overall 110th match since 2016.
Major League Footy is the independent competition of 7-a-side Australian Rules Football in the United States. The 2018-19 Premiership Season will feature sides from Central Florida joined by the Miami Saints in a regular season running through April 6, 2019.
Sides representing the Pittsburgh and Greater Philadelphia regions of Philadelphia will participate in two weekends (March 16, March 23) of ‘State of Origin’ double-headers.
The Major League Footy Playoffs will see the #2 and #3 seeds square off for a chance to take on the #1 seed (minor premiers) in the Major League Footy Championship Final, Saturday, April 20, 2019.
BLOODS – ‘FISH CLASH IN MLF SEASON OPENER
Ball up is 11 AM EDT.
The Swans will be looking to avenge a shock 120-114 loss to the ‘Fish to close out the summer campaign, having only a month to ruminate over the last-moment defeat.
With Major League Footy pivoting to an October-March regular season schedule, the Swans may be eager to see a clean slate after an uneven summer circuit.
Although the Bloods finished 7-4 and atop the ladder as minor premiers, inconsistencies during a rough mid-season skid – punctuated by big losses to Tampa Bay and Miami – will top a list of corrective tasks for coaches Greg Bray and Matt Elliott heading into Autumn.
All four St. Pete losses in 2018 came in games that saw the opposition top the century mark on the scoreboard, and those defensive lapses contrast starkly with a 7-0 record when the Swans were able to control play.
Following last week’s MLF Territorial Allocation Draft, the two ‘cross-town’ clubs representing St. Petersburg – as well as the other Central Florida sides – will launch the new league year with player lists accentuated by a core group of local players.
With Starfish FC entering Year Five as the original St. Petersburg-based footy side, the team’s core group looks to start the 2018-19 MLF season with a reprise of the Summer Season Premiership victory.
MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY WEEK ONE:
ST. PETERSBURG SWANS v ST. PETERSBURG STARFISH FC
Saturday, October 27. Game One: 11 AM.
Rollbotto Oval at Crescent Lake Common, St. Petersburg.
WITH ASSIST FROM DONS, BOMBERS LAND IN TAMPA
Major League Footy is pleased to announce the addition of the Tampa Bay Bombers to the league’s 2018 Premiership Season competition, effective immediately.
The new Tampa-based side will take the ground in their first scheduled league match vs. the Suncoast Suns, Saturday, May 19.
Made possible by the support of the Essendon Bombers, who have graciously provided jumpers and other equipment to field the squad, the Bombers will be operated by Miro Gladovic.
Perhaps best known for his American Footy Star project, Gladovic has a long history with Essendon and the AFL, and is excited to field a side in Major League Footy.
‘The aim is to tightly integrated the storied Bombers tradition with Tampa’s long-standing history as home to MacDill Air Force Base, an important part of the Tampa Bay community’ says Gladovic.
‘We’ll take the ground in honor of both the Bombers identity and all of the service men and women at MacDill every time we play’ he added.
The headquarters of both the US Southern Command (SOCOM) and Central Command (CENTCOM), MacDill Air Force Base is home to a number of active-duty personnel from all NATO nations, including Australia and New Zealand, and is a critical economic and social component to the West Central Florida Region.
Adding a Tampa-based side will weave footy into the rich fabric of Tampa Bay sporting life, while honoring the men and women in service at MacDill Air Force Base.
Major League Footy is the independent league of Australian Rules Football in the United States. Games are played on gridiron (American) football grounds, and competition is based on head-to-head, rather than tournament play.
Major League Footy clubs are active and coming online in communities throughout the United States, with a particular focus on metropolitan areas in Florida for 2018.
KLINGER IN ADVISORY ROLE TO MAJOR LEAGUE FOOTY
Major League Footy is pleased to announce the addition of Darrin Klinger as Special Advisor to the League.
Through business, politics and sports, Darrin has established key relationships between the U.S. and Australia.
Darrin travels to Australia regularly and works with a variety of sports interests including the Australian Rules Football Coaches Association, Melbourne Storm (NRL), Netball Victoria, and a number of Australian Football League teams, coaches, players and executives.
He is the founder of Australia – USA (AUSA) Connect, a network of thought leaders bridging opportunities through an exchange of ideas and business opportunities between two like-minded cultures. He is a member of the Australia America Association, AFL’s Geelong Cats Football Club. A massive tennis fan, Darrin has attended five straight Australian Opens.