(SEATTLE, WA.) No Danika Brace? No Problem. No Bryn Renda? No Problem. No LaShaunda Fowler. No Problem. Despite the loss of several key pieces on both sides of the ball, the incumbent Western Conference champions, continue to roll. The Mist are the odds-on favorite to head to their third straight Legends Cup appearance, which would be a franchise record.

On paper, Austin was expected to play a more competitive game, but the LFL’s No.1 ranked offense registered 300 total yards to Austin’s only 128 yards. The main headline for Austin had to have been the disappearance of first year phenom Kassandra Bills, who outside of a few late in the 4th quarter garbage time catches, was held in check. In fact, very uncharacteristically, Bills dropped two would-be touchdown passes.

The 1st half belonged to the dynamic duo backfield of Seattle, Stevie THE BULL Schnoor and Dominique Malloy, both of whom accounted for all of Seattle’s 34 first half points. Bills and probable League MVP nominee Teshay Winfrey did connect on a 35 yard touchdown strike in the 1st half as the sole and only score for Austin.

In the 2nd half, it was more of Schnoor and Malloy and less of an offense everyone expected to keep Austin in the game, as the Acoustic offense did not manage a single 2nd half point. The Austin offense continues to suffer in the run game, their often injured running back Michelle Marshall is far too small and injury-prone to be effective. Without a run game, defenses are rolling a safety over to help on Bills, which leaves the underneath routes open but offensive coordinator Mike Olvera never adjusted his play-calling to take advantage. Despite earning a lot of praise, Austin head coach Mike Olvera, has really struggled with halftime adjustments.

For Seattle, they are peaking at the right time, heading into the post-season with Jade Randle playing at the top of her game, a solid run game as well as an attacking defense. The primary concern would have to be the production of KK Matheny. The 5’2 Quarterback’s stat-line looked impressive going 10 of 17 for 3 TDs, however, its her inability to get on the same page with Randle, that could spell trouble in the Playoffs. The question will be, if Matheny does not light it up early in the Western Conference Championship on August 20 vs Los Angeles, how quickly will she get the hook in favor of 2016’s most effective passer, Michelle Angel?

Austin now has an entire off-season to mesh under the new system of Mike Olvera and perhaps most importantly, get healthy. This was a roster decimated by injuries in 2017 which included team captain Steph McCormick, back-up center Brande Stolte, running back Michelle Angel and others. Coupled with one of the toughest schedules in the league, Austin’s chances for racking up wins was not great. Despite their 0-4 season, there is a lot to be excited about in Longhorn country. The passing attack of Winfrey and the Smurfs, coupled with finding a solid running back in the off-season as well as getting several key contributors into better playing shape, will make Austin an instant competitor in a very tough Western Conference.

Seattle now can rest and await the Los Angeles Temptation, in the Western Conference Championship on Sunday, August 20th at Sears Centre Arena (Hoffman Estates, IL.).

Austin Seattle
Score 6 62
First Downs 8 22
Rushes-Yards (Net) 15-33 26-229
Passing Yards (Net) 95 71
Passes Att-Comp-Int 22-8-2 19-10-0
Total Offense Plays-Yards 37-128 45-300
Fumble Returns-Yards 0-0 0-0
Kickoff Returns-Yards 1-7 1-8
Interception Returns-Yards 0-0 2-24
Fumbles-Lost 2-1 0-0
Penalties-Yards 3-19 7-31
Possession Time 14:18 21:49
Third-Down Conversions 0/6 1/4
Fourth-Down Conversions 0/6 3/3
Red-Zone Scores-Chances 0/2 7/7