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Archive for Monday, June 26, 2000

Rhein survives with 13-10 win

June 26, 2000

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— The Rhein Fire, despite trailing most of the game, won their second World Bowl title in three with a last-gasp scoring drive.

Pepe Pearson's 1-yard touchdown with 1:12 left gave the Fire a 13-10 win over the Scottish Claymores.

But the victory was not assured until Claymores kicker Roger Hart's 40-yard field-goal attempt went wide left with 4 seconds left.

"It was a great feeling when I scored," Pearson said. "Our offensive line did the job and I got it in the end zone."

Rhein head coach Galen Hall became the first coach in league history to win two World Bowl titles.

"I'm so proud of our team and our coaches," Hall said. "I thought it would come down to the last seconds, and it certainly did."

The game featured the league's two best passers in Kevin Daft and Danny Wuerffel, but neither one looked sharp.

Daft, who led NFL Europe with a league-record 107.3 quarterback rating, was 16-of-29 for 177 yards and an interception for the Claymores (6-5).

Wuerffel, the 1996 Heisman Trophy winner who finished with a 107.2 quarterback rating, was 12-of-30 for only 90 yards with two interceptions, but led the Fire (8-3) on a 43-yard touchdown drive for the winning score.

"If I don't play another down of football, I'll be thrilled to have this as my final memory," Wuerffel said. "Winning a championship with these guys and a coach as great as Galen is something I'll remember forever."

Wuerffel entered the league as a free agent hoping to sign an NFL deal at the end of the season.

"I'm not sure what will happen with regards to the NFL," said Wuerffel, who also led the University of Florida to a national championship in 1996. "Hopefully I'll have some options and then I'll have to decide what's best for me and my family."

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