BA Monarchs Fail to Upset Prague Panthers

Those with an unbiased view on the Bratislava Monarchs might agree that everything was the way it was supposed to be on Sunday as the Monarchs fell to the reigning champions the Prague Panthers 12-36. After all, the Panthers are not supposed to lose in this league. The Monarchs’ defense had no answer for the Panthers’ running game and the Monarchs’ offense ran flat in a game that quickly spun out of control. The story of the game however belonged to the officiating crew.

Defensive end Ben Rush puts a hit on the Panthers quarter back. Photo courtesy of Ivan Salay.

In 2006 after the Seattle Seahawks lost to the Steelers in Super Bowl XL, then head coach Mike Holmgren famously quipped “We knew it was going to be tough going against the Pittsburgh Steelers. I didn’t know we were going to have to play the guys in the striped shirts as well.” Every Monarchs player, coach and fan can relate to this thought as the officials made a number of questionable calls. For example, the Monarchs forced the Panthers QB to fumble and recovered the ball only to have the refs call it an incomplete pass. And then, interesting enough, there was a Panthers incomplete pass that was ruled as a fumble and the Panthers recovered it for a 20 yard gain. After 3 ½ quarters of constant penalties and botched calls, the Monarchs fans grew restless and started yelling at the refs. The refs then decided to cancel the rest of the game. The repercussions that this will have on the Monarchs will be decided in the upcoming days by the CAAF.

While the phantom penalties and kicked calls may have not affected the outcome of the game, it would be good to see the CAAF and the refs accept accountability for the poor officiating and take measures to be more consistent in future games and just let the athletes play.

Corner back Peter Rosinsky runs for the touchdown after an interception in the first quarter. Photo courtesy of Ivan Salay

Officiating aside, credit must be given when credit is due and the Prague Panthers showed why they are the team to beat in the league. They scored 3 touchdowns on offense, including one on their first drive, 1 touchdown on special teams with an 81 yard punt return, and 1 touchdown on defense with an interception run back.

The Monarchs were only able to find the end zone twice. After another controversial turnover that awarded the Panthers the ball, justice was quickly served as Monarchs cornerback Peter Rosinsky intercepted a pass and ran the ball back 31 yards for a touchdown. The other touchdown came on a 5 yard run by quarterback Parker Siemens in the second quarter.

The Monarchs are now 3-1 in the Czech League and hope to regroup when they travel to Prague on June 5th to face the Prague Lions. There is still much at stake as the league’s top teams fight for the #1 and 2 seeds in the playoffs to secure home field advantage.


  1. Officials blew as many calls as in any given Czech league game. There was no difference in officiating Monarchs´ games this year. Actually, all games were officiated by very similar crew. Their standard is may be high, may be low, may be just adequate to the players´ level, but definitely constant. However, this game offered as many fouls from Monarchs´ side as all three previous games together.
    Sorry, if officiating remains same (and may be poor) and behaviour of players differ, than it´s not about officiating.
    After all, there is nobody better available and all candidates are warmly welcomed on both banks of Morava river…

  2. In my experience , Gamesmanship ( cheating or bribes by another word ) plays a bit part in all Slovak sport . I used to go and watch football, but I got fed up with the players throwing themselves to the floor at the slightest brush of contact, almost like they had been pole axed . Holding their faces and then rolling several time on the floor , Daniel Alves style , if a hand was just close to their face or upper body . Often contact was minimal,or not at all .

    The problem is that these men that coach nothing Slovak teams, love they are on some position of some self importance and must win at any cost to preserve their ego.

  3. @Oscar not only because of fans disagreeing but calling the refs faggots
    While the refs blew quite an amount of calls (and not only against Monarchs) they didn’t deserve that. The game was cancelled after HC Ludo Galka (not directly) encouraged the fans to yell at refs. I have to say they had it coming.
    As a side effect instead of talking about poor officiating CAAF will talk about the penalization for Monarchs.

  4. Good point… I know about people, who are willing to start, however, anything like that stop them for another period. And a few quit because of that. So it´s kind of circle. And when current guys says “hey, stop, am I crazy, that I´m doing that”?, then there will be nobody and as you wrote – no striped guys, no games. And despite the fact, number of officials is as low as number of pandas, officials are not protected by law:-)
    “Luckily”, Czech league has (had) so huge gaps between teams, so results a/were somehow predictable, so nobody can be upset, that he lost. As league gets tighter, more nervous games are expected. And people are not used to handle close games. Actually, this game was not close, but is in the same category

  5. Thank you all your replies …

    Is this a serous game, or for fun ? Sounds like you will always have problems finding umpiring officials if this is the carry on each weekend .

  6. To write a complete truth – there are two Slovak officials, but one of them is active Monarchs player and therefore is not eligible on days, when Monarchs play. And even this guy started to officiate on his own

  7. A true story… Truth is, there was one Slovak (linesman on opposite site), rest were Czechs. Reason, why rest of the crew were Czechs is: there are no other Slovakian officials, despite several requests football club of Bratislava Monarchs never provided even a candidate for this job.
    The desribed situation – Slovak linesman called an incomplete pass (not a questionable penalty), Monarchs´ coach went crazy and was yelling (not asking), that this is a horrible etc. and started the usual “story” about officials hurting Monarchs´ side. Answer was, that he is wrong, that nobody is punishing anybody and on this particular play, call was made by a Slovak official (a not really propriate try to avoid any doubt, that Czechs are against Slovakian team).
    Remark: it was an incomplete pass and the linesman was right. There is a clear evidence on the tape (which was obviously never reviewed by the writing “journalist”). Actually, if you watch the tape properly, you might note, that referee is throwing a bean bag, because is thought, it was a backward pass. But referee was wrong, linesman was right and this “questionable penalty” was a proper call. Everyone can watch it on tape

  8. I’d be interested in knowing what nationality the Referee and Line Judges were ? Many of these people do this job for fun and get paid a very small fee plus expenses and without them, there is no game . They often have no TV replays or slow motion action, so can only give what they can see at that second …. Whilst I am sure all the spectators that complained from the touchline were experts on the games Laws, only the men in stripped shirts were the opinions that mattered , right or wrong . It is called playing sport with Respect….just suck it up guys !

    1. There was only one Slovak ref and the rest were Czech. It was interesting when the Slovak line judge called a questionable penalty and when our head coach asked the head ref about it the ref replied “It’s your countryman who called it”… implying that the Czech refs are there for the Czechs and the Slovak refs are there for the Slovaks. The last 3 games we played against other Czech teams were called pretty good, but this one was despicable. It’s not like the Panthers need the extra help, they are already very good. I must admit that my teammates lost their composure because of this and some of the veteran players should have set a better example. Although it’s extremely frustrating when the refs won’t let you just play, we as a team should have just sucked it up. Our next 2 games are against the other 2 Prague teams and we need to not worry about the officiating and just worry about sticking it to the Lions and Blackhawks.

  9. Agree with Oscar. Will be interested to hear what happens next. You’d expect repercussions for the club if dissent from players and coaches was the issue but not in a situation like this, unless abuse from the touchlines had really got out of hand.

  10. Why would refs cancel a game only because the fans don’t agree with their decisions? That it is really absurd.

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