By K L Barrett
The Simulation Football League reached an unprecedented 10 seasons and more than 700 games in 2018. In this column, we’ll highlight an exclusive list of ten. The biggest, the funniest, the most boring…we’ll have them here.
So a great place to start is with the very first one. The date was June, 2013. The SFL had recently risen from the ashes of the defunct WAFL. Back then, there were only 7 teams and the games weren’t played to the same schedule that they are now. So, one of the three matches had to be the first. The Dallas Stars and the New York Knights were the teams to play it.
#10. THE FIRST ONE.
GAME NUMBER: 1
DATE: June 15th, 2013
LOCATION : Dallas Stars Stadium
The home team started the game on fire, scoring 20 unanswered points, thanks to a great perfomance by their quarterback, Thomas Ranklins (281 yds, 1TD and no picks) and a defense that limited the Knights to only 3 first downs and 116 yards on offense, ending with six sacks and three interceptions on Joseph Redfeather.
Despite the success, they had a bit of luck in some plays:
The Knights reacted in the third quarter behind a dominant perfomance from their #1 wide receiver, Joseph Legacy, who ended the game with 157 yards and 1 TD. On the flip side of the ball, Jeb Gatlin was the leader of the New York defense, with 12 tackles. In the end it was all in vain and their comeback came short, when A.J.Ahanotu intercepted Redfeather near midfield to save the victory for Dallas. It was Ahanotu’s second pick of the night and the first game saving turnover in the SFL.
Dallas Stars 26 – New York Knights 21.
The Dallas Stars, despite this victory, couldn’t qualify for the playoffs and ended the season with a mediocre 4-4 record. The New York Knights only lost one more game for the rest of the season – against the Kailua Wyverns – and ended the regular season with a 6-2 record and eventually became the first SFL Champions, defeating Orlando 38-17 and the Oklahoma City Renegades, 45-41 in the playoffs.
THE PROTAGONISTS SAID:
Cameron Irvine (SFL Commish):
“Thinking about what we went through just to put the league on back then – we had no idea what hexing was. I created 20 players just for that game and due to APFs roster restrictions, I would have to delete those players and create 20 new ones for the next game – repeating the process over and over again all on my own. The things I did to make this league work back in the day were absurd. But we’re here. That determination meant something – the inaugural game is the defintion of our determination here in the SFL. And to think – a team from Dallas won it – five years ago – when I didn’t live there or never had plans to. Now that’s where the convention will be, where the league is headquartered and where all of our growth has occurred. And they beat a team that would go on to win more championships than any other team in the league”
Ronnie Nickens (Dallas’ owner):
“Hello sir! Man that was so long ago, I really don’t remember about that game! I really enjoy being part of the SFL, the best simulation football league in the world. I’m 65 yrs old and playing simulation games for sport is something I’ve been doing all my life . I was commissioner of Computer Sports Ohio for over 25 years a very successful Postal Simulation League.”
A note from the editor-in-chief: This is a great start to what is going to be a fantastic series. Due to K L Barrett’s other commitments, these articles may be sporadically spread, but that doesn’t take away from the quality of them. I can’t wait for this series to gather some speed. Sit back, relax and enjoy a journey through time.