Israel’s American football team plays first international game
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Israel’s American football team plays first international game

Maranatha Baptist Bible College Crusaders from Watertown, Wisconsin thump national team 49-6

Israel's national American football team plays against NCAA Division III team Maranatha Baptist Bible College at the Baptist Village sport complex near Petah Tikva in 2012. (Ariel Schalit/AP)
Israel's national American football team plays against NCAA Division III team Maranatha Baptist Bible College at the Baptist Village sport complex near Petah Tikva in 2012. (Ariel Schalit/AP)

PETAH TIKVA, Israel (AP) — There were no cheerleaders, tailgaters and not that many spectators. The gridiron was marked over a baseball diamond and the home side scored one touchdown while conceding seven.

As debuts go, however, Israel’s first American football international on Thursday in Petah Tikva was considered a success.

Israel lost 49-6 to Maranatha Baptist Bible College Crusaders from Watertown, Wisconsin, a Division III team. But local enthusiasts were merely happy to see a national team formed and playing, five years after launching a local league.

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