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CAFL Press Release

Beijing Lions Work Overtime for First Win

Monday October 3, 2016

 Beijing, China - The Beijing Lions defense came up big, stopping the Shanghai Skywalkers two point conversion attempt in overtime to come away with a 54 -53 victory in the season opener for both teams in the new China Arena Football League. The Skywalkers trailed by 15 points in the second half, yet were able to tie the game in the final 16 seconds.

The comeback was aided by a Beijing turnover. After Shanghai’s Shane Austin scored early in the fourth quarter, Beijing kick returner James Romain fumbled and the Skywalkers Christian Wise recovered near the goal line. One play later Austin was running back into the end zone and Shanghai was down by a point.

The drama continued as the Lions Tian Hao Zhang recovered a fumble in the end zone for a Beijing score. Austin then hit receiver Mike Washington with a scoring strike, his third TD catch of the day, with just 16 seconds remaining. Shanghai looked to tie the game with a pass play on the ensuing two point conversion, but an interference call made that try easier, allowing Austin to run in for two to force the first overtime game in league history.

On the first possession of overtime the Lions drove 44 yards in nine plays with receivers Collin Taylor hauling in three catches and Tuohuti Alilya two more to set up the go ahead score. On a third and goal from the five Chris Dieker Scored his second rushing touchdown of the game and the point after by Pat Clarke III put Beijing up 54 to 47.

The Skywalkers found the end zone six plays later. Their march to pay dirt began on their own 15 yard line with back to back receptions by Washington. Shawn Kauleinamuku caught a pass just over midfield and then a roughing that passer penalty set up a first and goal at the nine. Then on second and goal from the two Kaleinamuku scampered in for his second rushing TD of the game to put Shanghai down by a point. The Skywalkers decided to go for a two point conversion and the win. Austin hit Kauleinamuku with a short pass but he was tackled two yards shy of the end zone and the Lions escaped with the 54 to 53 victory.

On the Day Beijing was led by Quarterbacks Luke Collis who passed for five scores and Chris Dieker who ran scored twice rushing while catching another.

Scoring breakdown by quarter: 

 

1

2

3

4

OT

FINAL

Shanghai

 6

13

 7

21

 6

53

Beijing

20

 7

 7

13

 7

54

 

About CAFL

With the official announcement of approval from the China government, the new professional league will be called CAFL (China Arena Football League), and the Beijing based operating company, formerly known as Ganlan Media International, will carry the same name.

“We think this acronym says it all,” said David Niu, the President of AFL Global, the founding corporation based in Conshohocken, PA, USA. “The league, and all of our efforts, are unique to China. We want to highlight the fact that we are playing American-style football, not to be confused with soccer. And we want to emphasize that this is China’s first ever professional league, played by the best players in the world.”

Many of the rosters will feature Chinese players, who have been learning and training for the arena game specifically for over a year, at 6 select Chinese Universities, under the guidance of AFL Global.

CAFL headquarters are located in Beijing, with leadership comprised of senior media executives and sports professionals with an array of government and commercial experience.