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COLUMBUS, GA, DECEMBER 19 -- The Columbus Lions’ long-awaited 2018 schedule, delayed by National Arena League expansion and arena considerations in NAL cities, features seven regular-season home games, with the first two coming against last season’s playoff opponents at Hughston Clinic Field in the Columbus Civic Center.

On Friday, April 13, last year’s playoff semifinalists, the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks, open the season in Columbus at 7:30 p.m. The Lions overcame a double-digit deficit and made a thrilling comeback in Allentown, PA last June to advance to the 2017 championship game in Jacksonville.

The Sharks will be the Lions’ second opponent on home turf on Saturday, April 21. The first two home games are sandwiched around bye weeks for the Lions, with the first road game against the expansion Massachusetts Pirates on May 6 in Worcester, MA.

The Lions’ remaining home games are May 12 vs. the expansion (Greensboro, NC) Carolina Cobras; June 9 against the expansion (Portland) Maine Mammoths, June 30 vs. Massachusetts Pirates; July 7 against Jacksonville Sharks and July 28 against Maine Mammoths.

Head Coach and Director of Football Operations Jason Gibson said “We’re looking to go to our fourth straight league championship game. I’m excited about the caliber of both teams and players coming into the NAL, and particularly about our enhancements to the fan experience we’ve worked very hard to create and upgrade for 2018. With back-to-back playoff opponents to start the season at “The Jungle”, I think Lions Nation has reason to expect a truly outstanding 12th season for our franchise on the field and in the stands.”

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