Quad City Steeamwheelers 38 Green Bay Blizzard 45
The Green Bay Blizzard keep themselves in playoff contention thanks to the home win against Quad City. This is a bit of a surprise after starting quarterback Ja’Rome Johnson went down with a knee injury, but backup Max Meylor has stepped quite well into the role. The Blizzard built up a 42-16 at the end of 3 and managed to withstand a furious rally by E.J Hilliard to hold on for the 7-point victory.
Max Meylor drove the offense for the Blizzard, throwing for 118 yards and 2 touchdowns, while being the leading rusher. His 26 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground helped secure the victory. Running back Terrance Smith only managed 16 yards rushing. However, he made the most of it with 2 touchdown rushes. Blizzard receiver Shaq Currenton led Green Bay receivers with 56 yards on 4 receptions.
For the Steamwheelers, E.J. Hillard continues his MVP-caliber season. In the loss, he managed 204 yards passing, throwing for 5 touchdowns. Shane Simpson was his favorite target today with 6 receptions for 76 yards and a touchdown. His counterpart Keyvan Rudd also managed 53 yards and 2 touchdowns on 5 receptions.
The loss puts Quad City at 7-4 in the season. They are currently 3rd in the division, behind the Frisco Fighters, and the Massachusetts Pirates. They look for a chance to make up some ground as they travel to play the Iowa Barnstormers (Saturday at 7:05 CT). Green Bay currently sits in 4th in the division at 6-5. They are off this week but will have a chance to separate themselves next week when they take on the 5th-place Sioux Falls Storm (Friday, June 23, 7:05 CT).
Vegas Knight Hawks 28 Massachusetts Pirates 49
In a game close at the half (23-21), Massachusetts outscored the Knights 26-7 in the second half to take home the victory. Jimmie Robinson helped out a struggling Anthony Russo (8 of 15 132 yards, 1TD 1 Int) by rushing for 107 yards on 13 carries and 5 touchdowns. Pirate wide receiver Darren Carrington showed off his dual-threat ability, rushing for a touchdown, while adding 74 receiving yards and another touchdown. the Pirate’s defense was particularly stout in this win coming up with 2 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries, and 2 sacks in the win.
For the Knight Hawks, Joe Mancusco had a good game in a losing effort. His 176 yards and 3 touchdowns helped keep the Hawks in this game for a while. Davonte Sapp-Lynch led all rushers with 53 yards on 10 attempts. Jonathan Johnson, Quentin Randolph, and Caleb Holley all had touchdown receptions. Johnson led all receivers with 71 yards. The lone highlight for the Hawk’s defense was Kalen Hicks’s interception and 39-yard return.
For the Knight Hawks, they fall to 4-7 on the season. Unfortunately, the task will not get any easier this weekend when they host the division-leading Bay Area Panthers (Saturday at 9:05 CT). For the pirates, they improve to 8-3, good enough for second in their conference. They are off this week, but host the struggling Tulsa Oilers in week 15 (Saturday, June 24th 6:05 CT).
Frisco Fighters 54 Sioux Falls Storm 51
Lorenzo Brown did everything he could to will the Storm to a win, but the Fighters managed to outlast the Storm to improve to 9-2. In a losing effort, Lorenzo Brown threw for 167 yards and 5 touchdowns and ran for another 66 and 2 TDs on the ground. Frisco’s T.J Edwards matched brown stride for stride, throwing for 213, rushing for 46, and 6 total touchdowns.
For the Fighters, Jolly Jordan and Jerminic Smith were the leading receivers catching all three touchdowns. Jordan had 7 receptions for 82 yards and a touchdown, with Smith catching 5 for 74 and 2 touchdowns. For the Storm Donnie Corley led all receivers with 3 receptions for 62 and 2 touchdowns. Defensively, Storm defensive back Byron Edwards had the play of the day with an interception and a 25-yard return.
For the Storm, the loss put them at 5-5 on the season, one game behind the Green Bay Blizzard for the final playoff spot. This upcoming week they will have a chance to make up some ground when they play the 1-10 Tulsa Oilers (Saturday 7:05 CT). For The Fighters, they travel to take on the Northern Arizona Wranglers (Saturday 7:05 CT) looking to solidify their first seed in the eastern conference.
Iowa Barnstormers 48 Tulsa Oilers 40
In a battle of cellar dwellers in the east, the Iowa Barnstormers managed to get their second win. This despite starting the game in a 12-0 hole. Iowa quarterback Daniel Smith had quite the game in the win throwing for 198 yards and 4 touchdowns on 16 of 24 passing. Storm running back Antonio Wimbush’s dual-threat capability was on full display today, rushing for 36 yards and 2 TDs. He also led all Iowa receivers with 76 yards and a touchdown on 6 receptions. Defensive back Jadarius Byrd also made his presence felt in this game. His Interception and 35-yard return paved the way for an easy touchdown in the Victory.
For the Oilers, Andre Sale threw for 218 yards and 5 TDs in the loss. His only mistake was the aforementioned Interception. His favorite target of the day was Jonathan Nance, who came up with 60 yards receiving and 3 touchdowns.
At this point in the season, both the Barnstormers and Oilers are just trying to build momentum for next season. They are both likely out of the playoff hunt with 6 weeks left. The Barnstormers will be looking to score win number 3 this weekend traveling to Quad City to face the Steamwheelers. The Oilers host a Sioux Falls Storm team looking to get back in the playoff hunt.
Duke City Gladiators 43 Tucson Sugar Skulls 47
In what feels like a rebuilding year for the gladiators since the Nate Davis trade, they again come up short. Tucson took a 5-point lead into the 4th that wound up being enough to secure the victory. Tucson Quarterback Ramone Atkins was a difference-maker this week throwing for 164 yards and 4 TDs. Running Back Benjamin Jones added 38 yards and 2 TDs in the running game. Carrington Thompson’s strong season continues with 7 receptions for 59 yards and 2 TDs. This puts his TD total at 19 for the season, tied for the league lead. Tucson’s League-leading defense had some say in this game as well. Defensive lineman Maurice Jackson scored the first points in this game with a fumble return for a touchdown.
For the Gladiators, Charles McCollum kept the gladiators in the game with a strong performance. 176 yards and 3 TDs through the air, and another on the ground. Wide Receiver Gary Brown saw the bulk of the action with 103 yards and 2 TDs. Defensively, Claude Davis got two sacks of Ramone Atkins in a losing effort.
The loss brings Duke City to 4-7 on the season, in a tie with Vegas for worst in the West. Things don’t look to get any easier for the Gladiators this weekend when they host the red-hot Arizona Rattlers (Sunday at 4:05 CT). The Tucson Sugar Skulls improve to 6-5 on the season, in third place in the west. They look to keep pace with the Panthers and the Rattlers this weekend when they host Nate Davis and the San Diego Strike Force (Saturday 8:05 CT).
Bay Area Panthers 63 Arizona Rattlers 70
A matchup of the two best teams in the west, this game lived up to the billing. Arizona took a 42-35 lead at the half, that wound up being the difference in this game. Drew Powell had a game that earned him POTW honors in the IFL with 230 yards passing 78 yards rushing and 9 total TDs(4 passing and 5 rushing). Isaiah Huston led all Rattlers with 97 receiving yards and a touchdown. Linebacker Cecil Cherry got into the action as well with a 10-yard kickoff return for a touchdown right before the half. Defensive lineman Chris Terrell led his defense with 2 sacks and a fumble recovery.
For the Panthers, Dalton Sneed continues to shine, with 211 yards and 5 TDs. Justin Rankin continues to be a force on the ground with 64 yards and 3 TDs. He also had 62 yards receiving and another touchdown through the air. Wide Receiver Nih-Jer Jackson was a serious problem for the Rattler’s defense coming up with 96 yards and 3 TDs. In a losing effort, Antwan Kincade’s 7 tackles and an interception stood tall.
This game puts the Panthers and Rattlers in a tie for first place in the West. They both will be looking to differentiate themselves this weekend. The Panthers travel to take on the 4-7 Vegas Knight Hawks (Saturday 9:05 CT). The Rattlers host the last-place Duke City Gladiators this weekend (Sunday 4:05 CT).
Northern Arizona Wranglers 38 San Diego Strike Force 36
The Wranglers had their hands full this week but managed to outlast the Strike Force, taking the lead for good on a 25-yard Kettle to Ware Jr. touchdown pass. Kettle was efficient this game with 145 yards passing 2 TDs and 1 INT. Kettle added another 74 yards and 2 TDs on the ground. Running back Jarrod Ware Jr had 8 receptions for 60 yards and a touchdown and added a rushing touchdown for good measure. Wrangler receiver Ramaud Chiaokhi managed 6 for 66 and a touchdown. For the Wrangler’s defense, Kishawn Walker was a difference maker with 7 tackles and 2 Ints.
The Strike Force continues to be competitive with the addition of Nate Davis but seems to have a hard time closing out games. Nate Davis gave the kind of performance you would expect throwing for 239 and 5 TDs, but also threw 2 Ints. Marques Rodgers proved to be difficult to deal with catching 102 yards and 2 touchdowns. Fellow wideouts Kentrez Bell and Carlos Thompson had big games too, with 62 yards and a TD for Bell, and 61 yards with 2 TDs for Thompson.
The win improves the Wranglers to 6-5, giving them a 2-game lead over the Strike Force with 6 games left to play. This week the Wranglers really need a win, but have some tough sledding as they host the Frisco Fighters (Saturday 8:05 CT). The Strike force fall to 4-7, likely needing to win out to stand any chance of making the playoffs. They will search for win number 5 this weekend traveling to Tucson to take on the Sugar Skulls (Saturday 8:05 CT)