In a do-or-die match, where a win would mean a playoff berth and a loss would mean the end of the regular season, the Copperheads put forth a valiant effort, but fell just short, losing to the Jacksonville Axeman 30-16 in this South Conference Week 6 matchup.
Had the Copperheads won this matchup on Saturday at the Paradise Coast Sports Complex in Naples, they would’ve entered the playoffs. Now, they have just one more game remaining, a post-season touring side match against the Coogee Randwick Wombats, based out of Australia, in September. The Copperheads finished the regular season with a 2-4 record, good for third place in the South Conference.
Though the result was not what the Copperheads wanted, it was a noble effort by the team, especially going up against a very tough undefeated Axeman club. The team is very thankful to both its team and gameday sponsors: Encore Cabinets & Design, KAM Concrete, Booty Builder, Estero Bay Chevrolet and Chiropractic Care & Rehab Center.
The first half was a tightly played affair, with the Copperheads giving the Axeman tons of trouble. Though the Axeman jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead, the Copperheads answered right back. Arnold Mananu in the Roger B. Rice PA #9 shoveled it to Shane Spring in the #26 Copperheads’ Athletic Training jersey. Spring bullied his way through a number of Axeman defenders, scampering in for a score. The rookie Kevin Kermundu, rocking the Grappino #6, kicked in the conversion to tie the score at six.
The Axeman would then quickly turn the lead into 16-6, but the Copperheads answered back again after Spring forced a turnover and Kermundu picked up the ball and ran in for the score to make it 16-10. Kermundu would pick up the conversion to make it 16-12, which is how the score would remain at the half.
The second 40 minutes were all Axeman. The Axeman would pile on a few scores to make it 26-12 before the Copperheads could respond. Kermundu picked up the ball after a scrum, passing it to Rafael Rottiers in the Turtle Shirts #16. Rottiers would toss it to Mananu who gave it to Roderigus Ceasar in the High Gate & Atlanta Renegades #6. Caesar, the nine year veteran, leaped in through a few defenders to get the four points.
KAM #12 Rashad Shelton won the Players’ Player award with four points, followed by Spring with three. Caesar, Cardio Gym #16 Wes Piggins and James Loehr all tied with two.
At the end of the regular season the Player's Player voting has com to a close. Wes Piggins lead the voting with nine points. Spring is in second place with eight points, while Shelton and Anthony Halikas round out the top four with seven points.
Although the regular season is over the Copperheads will be back at it again on September 9th, when they play host to the Wombats in Naples at Paradise Coast Sports Complex for their final game of the season in a WHITEOUT Match. Online ticket sales for this match will benefit the Naples Chamber of Commerce's Leadership Collier Foundation. To track the sale please enter ALC22 in the Coupon Code box at check out.