San Diego Lions

MIRA LOMA, California (July 16, 2001) The San Diego Lions culminated
their undefeated season on Saturday, beating the Santa Cruz Roos to win their
third consecutive California Australian Football League (CAFL) Grand Final.
The final score of the game was 9.15 69 for the Lions to 6.4 40 for the
Roos. The game, played under windy conditions, was a rugged, hard-fought
tactical affair that featured the Roos flooding their defensive zone and the
Lions' normally-potent offense struggling to break through.

Lions coach and star Chris Stiegler said the turning point in the game
came late in the third quarter when Lions substitute Full Forward Ian Lahores
entered and scored two quick goals. "We were struggling with the wind and
Ian gave us the buffer we were so desperately looking for." Bouyed by
Lahores' goals, the Lions went on to run out the fourth quarter with a brace
of goals that sealed the deal. Other standouts on the day were San Diego
ruckman Donovan Trost, voted best on ground, and the Lions' forward pocket
Justin McLarty whose scrappy play and speed put the San Diegans in a position
to win. "The difference, in the end, was the depth of our bench," said

The win was San Diego's third CAFL Premiership on the trot, and the third
Grand Final in a row in which the Lions beat the Roos. Last year, Santa
Cruz entered the Grand Final as prohibitive favorites, having gone through
the regular season undefeated, only to lose to the Lions 11.14 80 to 6.5 41.
The previous year, the Lions won a nail-biter, 6.8 44 to 6.6 42.

The CAFL is the oldest regular Australian Rules Football competition in
the United States. It was founded in 1998 and now features teams in Los
Angeles, Phoenix, Riverside and Orange County in addition to Santa Cruz and
San Diego.

Australian Rules Football is a fast, free-flowing game that combines
aspects of soccer, American Football, rugby and basketball. A full contact
sport featuring fast pace and athletic skills with a huge following in its
home country, the game is growing rapidly in America since its inception in
1997 by some ex-pats in the Mid West. The high-level amateur sport now
boasts 34 teams across the nation, as well as National and International
Tournament participation. The sport's rules were codified in 1858 and
probably predate all other modern forms of football such as American,
Canadian, Rugby Union and League, soccer, and Gaelic Football. Today,
Australian Rules Football is a multi-million dollar business in Australia
with other leagues in Britain, Canada, Denmark, Japan, New Zealand, and here
in the United States. For more information about the CAFL, please visit its
Official Web site: For more information about the
sport's governing body in the United States, visit the United States
Australian Football League's official Web site: For
a complete description of the game, please visit

Points in Australian Football are scored by kicking the ball through the
four goal posts at either end of the field. A "goal" (or "major score") is
six points and is recorded when the ball travels through the two larger posts
in the center. A "behind" (or "minor score") is one point and is recorded
when the ball travels through either set of outer posts. Minor scores are
also added when the ball is kicked or carried over the defensive goal line by
a defensive player. Scores are listed as Major scores - Minor scores - Total
score (as an example, in the case of the USAFL Grand Final, the Bulldogs
scored 3 goals and 4 points for a total of 22 points).

- Michael Gardiner

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