Atlanta Cover Photo

THIS IS THE SEASON ATLANTA EXPECTS TO GET PAST ARCH-ENEMY CHICAGO BLISS

(Atlanta, GA- Monday, May 23, 2016)

The Atlanta Steam (0-0) are 11 days away from their first game of the 2016 LFL season which will come on June 3 when the Omaha Heart (1-0) will visit the Infinite Energy Arena looking to end two years of Atlanta domination. While the “new” Omaha team already has more wins (1) than they have managed the entire 2015 season, look for the Steam to knock the Heart back into reality with their physical style of play.

Omaha will be coming to town with a new confidence after a one-sided 26-6 victory over New England (0-2), one of three new teams in the league this season, but Atlanta Head Coach Dane Robinson and his squad have been focused on preparation for the season rather than the “new” Heart. Robinson believes the Omaha win has helped keep his players focused during this long wait to take the field for the first time this season.

“The Omaha win has forced our ladies to prepare as if they are playing the reigning Legends Cup champions.” The third-year head coach went on to say that “We are not taking this game lightly by any stretch of the imagination. I am pushing this team harder in practice than previous seasons. We are not overlooking this game, and the Heart will see that we are not New England.”

Star quarterback Dakota Hughes says she hasn’t been “this excited to hit the field” before. The third-year QB points out that the team has been working as a unit since December 2015, and some have been working in smaller groups since September.

Hughes is excited about the mix of veterans, both Steam returning players and new players coming from other teams, and rookies on the roster this year.

“Fortunately, we have a good bit of veterans on our team that have helped the rookies quickly improve their level of play.” The signal caller known as the Gunslinger across the league went on to say “We work hand in hand, and we’ve really come together as one unit.”

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Hughes has a deep belief that this is the year the Steam will bring the Legends Cup back to Atlanta. “I thought the previous Steam groups were special, but this one takes the cake. We haven’t done much talking, and we are going to keep it that way until we play our last game of the season. Last year did not end the way we wanted, so we have worked on being a better team, and we will be.”

Robinson discussed the “quiet focus” that this team possess and acknowledged that in the past “We’ve been known as a team with a lot of bark but no bite, which was very humbling for our ladies because it was a result of our mediocre 3-3 record, but this year’s team has made a point of letting their actions speak for us.”

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Echoing the thoughts shared by Robinson, LFL standout Lauran Ziegler added “Last year we talked a whole lot, but this year we are going to let our play speak for us.” Ziegler went on to say “We have been training and preparing for the new season since shortly after losing in the Eastern Conference championship, so there is no excuse not to be prepared.”

Ziggy shared the Steam catch phrase that Robinson has worked to instill in the minds of the players ahead of the 2016 season, which is “What you do when no one is watching will show when everyone is watching.”

The team seems to have bought in to the new approach, and is eager to let their play make their statements this season.

The two previous seasons in the East have consisted of Atlanta beating Omaha (1-0) and losing to Chicago (0-1), but this year has the potential for the Steam to establish themselves as the division power as a result of a Bliss team that is weaker on both sides of the ball. The East now consists of Omaha, Chicago, and New England in addition to Atlanta.

Look for Atlanta to deliver a big win against Omaha that will put the league on notice that the Atlanta Steam is a serious threat to take the Legends Cup this season.