Written by Chris Mabry
After a scoring 76 points on the road against the Green Bay Blizzard, the Fighters return to the Comerica Center to take on their red river rivals the Tulsa Oilers. The Oilers are an expansion team entering the 2023 season and this is their first game in franchise history.
In the first half of the game, it was all Fighters as they entered halftime leading 22-6 (17-point lead).
Then in the third quarter, the Oilers attempted to play ketchup as the score was now 25-16. Tulsa was now behind by nine which in the IFL means nothing especially with the “Duce rule” now in effect for the entire game.
Overall, for being the Oilers first game, they did okay. Lot to improve on but they could be a problem for a lot of teams. Only time will tell.
In the fourth quarter, Fighters fans breathed a sigh of relief as mistakes for he Tulsa Oilers turned into opportunities thanks to fumbles, interceptions, and most importantly penalties.
Fighters quarterback T.J. Edwards completed 14 passes out of 25 attempts for 407 passing yards and rushed for 32 yards that included a rushing touchdown.
On defense, Trayshon Foster was the man with the plan who had 2 tackles for loss, and a sack on the Oilers quarterback Giovan Sanders who played in the IFL with the Bismarck Bucks.
These two teams will meet again on May 13 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
As for week 3, Frisco will be on the road April 1 against the Duke City Gladiators. This will be the sixth meeting between these two teams. Frisco has won all five meetings that include 3 wins at home and 2 in New Mexico. Kickoff will begin at 7:05 PM Central live on the IFL YouTube Chanel.
THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY
The Good: Salina Liberty and Sioux City Bandits both put up 75 points against league opponents.
Also Good: The Omaha Beef, Rapid City Marshals, and especially the Topeka Tropics all have great new looks!
The Bad: The Southwest Kansas Storm have a litany of problems on the field. Essentially they looked like a team in preseason that hadn't worked together. They'll improve.
The Ugly: The "G" decal on the Mustangs helmet doesn't look like an improvement. Don't like my opinion? Cool. I respect that. The colors look great, but the "G" looks like it belongs in a previous century and didn't suggest "new & fresh" to me. But their on-field play was lit!!! The Mustangs surprised me at every level!
Also Ugly: The 4-point play. When you have a great story like Game of Thrones and then oversaturate the story with a litany of unnecessary nude scenes...well, you get my point. The 4-point PAT option seems over gratuitous to me. While it will help good offenses pad the score, it creates more lop-sided victories when the defense of competitors can't keep up. Of course, the argument could be made that happens anyway. I don't disagree. However, my opinion is this hurts the parity and intense endings the CIF is looking for among all it's member teams. Fight me if I'm wrong.
Week 2 Previews
Starting with a glorious matchup, the Billings Outlaws travel to play the Omaha Beef at the Slaughterhouse on Friday, March 10, @ 7PM CST.
While we haven't seen the Outlaws play yet, the Beef made light work of the Omaha Stockmen (non-CIF member) by a score of 71-0. No matter who your opponent is, putting up 70+ points is impressive. What's more impressive is pitching a shutout in indoor football is extremely rare. The fact the Beef did both against the hapless Stockmen makes them relevant. On top of that, the Beef looked shiny with their new uniforms and orange-bronze helmets.
The JK Photography team in Omaha is really good! I think the Rayshaun Kizer-led squad is poised for a great season. While the Outlaws haven't played yet, they have the advantage of having watched Omaha game film. But there's not many mistakes they can emphasize from the Beef herd. Kerry Locklin is an incredibly smart coach and is sure to put together a great game plan. I have the Outlaws winning the first half because of it. But, due to the sheer talent on Omaha and the ability they all have of making adjustments when the game plan is discovered, I'll take Omaha in this one by a score of 57-52. Thriller!
Next, we have what I will call the game of the week. The Champs travel to take on last years #1 seed, the Sioux City Bandits. Kickoff is at 7PM CST on Saturday, March 11th.
This game has all the makings of an offensive slugfest! I think the players will get involved in that slugfest too, but trust they have enough professionalism to not let it get ugly. The receiving core on Salina looks like the best in the league, and their backfield is just as brutal. Tracy Brooks had 84 yards on the ground! They picked apart the still-winless Tropics. Their defensive backfield looks a little less potent with the losses of Dewayne "Ballhawk" Autrey and Mikendric Harper. However, they're still good. Coach O won't let them be less.
For Sioux City, Taz Wilson surprised me. 140 passing yards and 6 touchdowns through the air, adding a tuddy on the ground. At first, I was suspect about the offensive attack since Lorenzo Brown switched Sioux locations in preference to the Falls, instead of the City. The offensive attack really took off in the second half as Sioux City put up 75 points, just like their opponent this week. The defense struggled early but really buckled down holding the Marshals to 34 points. Claude Davis and Dajon Emory are lethal, and the defensive backfield looks like they're going to tick off receivers all year long. Anytime a player gets 3 sacks in one game, you know he'll be a nightmare for quarterbacks. That's Dajon Emory folks! For these reasons, and because the offensive line for Sioux City looks like the best in the league, I'm taking the Bandits in one of the highest-scoring affairs in CIF history. Bandits 67 Liberty 65. Get your tickets! You don't want to miss this one!
The talented Gillette Mustangs engage in Border Wars: Episode 1 as the Rapid City Marshals plan to host another intense matchup! Sunday Night Football in the Spring! Sunday, March 12 @ 6PM CST.
First off, please forgive the fact that my Mustangs helmet is wrong. I did that on purpose. I don't like the "G" decal. Too basic for me. Second, I'm impressed with the Mustangs on-field play. Their defense was sensational in Dodge City and their 30-12 win on the road was something I would not have predicted. Mike Pena is athletic and accurate. He was second this week in passing yards. His 4 touchdown passes all went to an impressive wideout named Karonce Higgins! That man is a baller! If Pena can develop a great rapport with the rest of his receivers, everyone becomes a threat on the Mustangs offense, and defenses will get overwhelmed quick. One the defense, Garret Pemelton is solidifying himself as a top defender in this league. 5 tackles and 2 sacks for that young man. The defense had 4 interceptions against the Storm, so watch out!
Last year when Gillette came to Rapid City, we were treated with one of the most intense ball games ever as the Marshals held on for a 56-55 overtime win in front of the home crowd.
For the Marshals, quarterback Tyrone Jones was really impressive...with his legs. The Bandits defense took awhile to figure him out as he danced his way to 124 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns. His 79 yards through the air was underwhelming, but I'd have negative net yards if Dajon Emory and Claude Davis were chasing me! On a good note, Jones seemed to have a rapport with receiver Jauhem Byrd, who had 51 of those yards. There's great receiver talent on this team and I think the O-line will be much improved this week. I'm more concerned with the Marshals defense. They allowed Taz Wilson to throw 6 TDs and the Bandits to add 3 rushing touchdowns. That said, I really think they make all the right adjustments this week and give their home crowd something to cheer about. Marshals 42 Mustangs 38
"Are you ready for some FOOTBALL!? A Monday night PARTY!" The game kicks of @ 7PM CST on Monday, March 13th in Topeka, Kansas.
First, how cool is it that all 4 games are on different nights? How often do we get to focus on one game and get to see all CIF matchups live in a weekend?
Second, I LOVE the new helmets of both the Arlington Longhorns and the Topeka Tropics!
Third, this may be a non-league matchup, but do NOT sleep on the Arlington Longhorns. They're probably the best independent team out there!
Fourth, the Tropics may have lost to the champs 75-45, but don't let that deceive you. Tropics quarterback Lorenz Stefan actually has the best quarterback numbers in the league through week 1 with 195 passing yards and 5 touchdowns. He seems to like returning receiver Ryan Martinez who edged the aforementioned Karonce Higgins in receiving yards with 115! He added 3 touchdowns. Fellow receiver Max Novak added another 3 TDs and 75 yards. They're an effective duo, so I'm anticipating the Tropics putting up some points! Their defense needs work.
Fifth, the Arlington Longhorns are always at a disadvantage not having the resources to attract top-notch talent with dollar bills. But, they're organized well and coached well, and are kind enough to give us all a show. The other non-league matchups look like this:
Rapid City Marshals 67 Fargo Invaders 21
Sioux City Bandits 60 Tri-State Tridents 9
Omaha Beef 71 Omaha Stockmen 0
The Longhorns should keep this game much closer, so to Topeka residents, my advice is buy a ticket and show up--even if there's no coconut-touting Hawaiian chics swaying. The Tropics will put on a show and the Longhorns will do plenty to make it great entertainment. Tropics 52 Longhorns 36. Besides, the colors of these teams and their helmets look so elegant, it's bound to look good.
The Southwest Kansas Storm, thankfully, have a bye this week, and they need it! They underplayed and underwhelmed in ever category and that O-line needs some work. I'm sure they're working on it and will show improvement when they host the Beef on March 18.
The CIF is heating up baby!
By Ducon Williams
By Chris Mabry
With almost a month until the 2023 Indoor Football League regular season gets underway, the IFL has announced some rule changes.
#1 is the "Duce" Rule:" Previously, the Duce Rule was only available in the 4th quarter of the game. Now, teams can take advantage of this rule and use it anytime they want. If you are unfamiliar with the rule, it is when the kicker kicks the ball through the uprights for 2 points. This rule was originally used in the National Arena League (NAL).
#2. Rule change number 2 is a additional rule to the duce rule. If the ball hits the goal post then the ball is considered live and any team can take control of the ball.
#3 Positive yardage during the end of the game is eliminated. Basically, teams can now take a knee and go into "victory" formation ending the game.
#4 As soon as the previous play is completed and the ball is spotted, the 25 second play clock will begin.
What do you think of the new rules? Which one are you most excited about? season 15 of the IFL kickoff on March 17, 2023 when the Arizona Rattlers take on the Quad City Steamwheelers. If you want to check out the entire rulebook click here.
Thank you Bismarck Bucks
With recent news of the Bismarck Bucks going on hiatus, there is a myriad of feelings that run through my slightly depressed mind. But after thinking of all the negative implications of such a beloved team and organization not playing in '23, I'm left with more happy memories than I can count.
The sudden demise of the Alliance of American Football (AAF), left my heart empty for football that wasn't the corrupt (my opinion) NFL. In my search to ease my sorrow, I stumbled upon a Bismarck Bucks game, where they were getting beat fairly soundly by the Sioux Falls Storm. But, they never would give up. Their resilience impressed me as they continued to grind and earn every yard in that arena. A drunk fan was often heard calling out above the rest of the crowd. Mike Tatum would make a play and the arena would ring with blissful excitement. Kids would dance and smile, often jumping up and down. The BEK broadcast was even well done, with the score, down and distance, and time remaining on the bottom ticker. It wasn't as elegant as the NFL, but it was professional. The talent astounded me on both sides of the ball. And me? I was hooked on the Bismarck Bucks when I found out they were 1-10 at the time and would never let up. Two weeks later, they'd upset the Quad City Steamwheelers who were contending for a playoff spot. They just wouldn't go away.
The Bismarck Bucks finished the season with a dismal 2-14 record in their first IFL season, but their following season, they only had one loss....consequently that was the only game they played due to Covid, but I was still impressed with how they played. The excitement was there, and the fans were loving it. The new-look San Diego Strike Force had come to town, and a noisy, passionate group of fans called the Horny Bucks would blow those hunter orange horns with enthusiasm. I cheered aloud on Eric Lauderdale's first TD catch. I also cheered when Strike Force Nathaniel Chavious took a swing pass to the house. I kept wanting to get into Taz Wilson's head to remind him not to overthrow Ryan Feiss (after it happened 5 times in the endzone). And rarely have I ever cheered as loud as the time when Zuril Hendrick broke the record for the longest Bucks touchdown, returning a missed field goal, breaking 4 tackles along the way and doing an elegant dive into the end zone for the Bismarck lead. BEK did a slow motion replay of his dive that looked like an elegant deer bouncing over a fence with a regal posture that resembled the finest British royalty, and, in the background, a congregation of fans religiously lifting their arms in praise. It was sacred! Watching on my 15" YouTube monitor, I felt the energy from the Bismarck Event Center 900 miles away! It was electrifying entertainment at it's finest. The Bucks would fall to a great San Diego squad 50-36.
Then, last year, they showed promise winning 3 of their first 5 games and putting up 76 points on the road in San Jose! Something happened after that, that I've never been able to pinpoint. The Bismarck Bucks would find a way to lose their final 11 games--some of them absolute nail biters. And while I have no actual favorite team, the Bismarck Bucks re-introduced me to Indoor Football and brought the second love of my life back to me. That's why, every night, I put on the beautiful antler-enshrined "B" shirt on as I sleep. I hope and pray that this isn't the end for the Bismarck Bucks. I hope and pray that mandatory Workers Comp. stipulations with WSI go to the hell that they came from and ease the burden of this amazing North Dakota team. Whether the Bucks ever come back or not, I just want to say...."Thank you! Thank you so much for the happiness you've brought to my life, and bringing this sport back into my heart. Thank you, my dear, Bismarck Bucks."
By Ducon Williams
Written by Chris Mabry
A few days after the 2022 IFL National Championship game game to a end, the Tucson Sugar Skulls have decded to part ways with head coach Dixie Wooten. Wooten was also the General Manager of the Sugar Skulls during his time with the team.
Dixie became the head coach in 2020 but never got to show his skills due to the COVID-19 Pandemic shut down the season. In 2022, the Sugar Skulls finished with a 9-8 record in western conference and placed in the playoffs as the 3rd seed. Their first round matchup was against the eventual champions the Northern Arizona Wranglers.
In two out of three official playing seasons, Dixie finished 17-16 with a 0-1 playoff record.
Below is the statement that the Sugar Skulls released on social media
Written by Chris Mabry
Today in Tulsa Oklahoma, the Indoor Football League announced that Tulsa will add a team for the 2023 season. The team will play their home games at the BOX Center.
From 2009-2011 it was home to the Tulsa Talons of the af2 and Arena Football League before moving to San Antonio. No word on if they are bringing the Talons name back. You can see the entire press conference below curtsey of the IFL YouTube Page.
AWFC Bowl III Preview
The young league called the American West Football Conference will hold it's 3rd title game tonight in Pasco, Washington as the undefeated Tri-City Rush look to repeat their win from a year ago. Their foe is the Wenatchee Valley Skyhawks, who punched their ticket with an impressive road win over the Idaho Horseman.
For young leagues trying to get a foothold, things don't always go as planned. The original 2022 schedule included the So Cal Red Tails, but they never played a game. The Yakima Canines were also on the schedule but with lingering Covid uncertainty, and a big financial hit from last year, they didn't play. The remaining AWFC teams combined resources to create another team to fill in scheduling gaps. The NorthWest Elite were born and played a few games to keep the schedule full and the league even played a few independent games as well as a crossover game with the Las Vegas Kings--members of the American Indoor Football Alliance.
As a result, the standings looked like this:
In year one, the Idaho Horsemen finished with an undefeated season and won the championship. This year, the Tri-City Rush have the opportunity to do it. Throughout the 2022 season, the Rush have glided through teams with huge margins of victory. The closest margin was a 13-point victory for the Rush over the Horsemen. From there, they made it look easy.
The Wenatchee Valley Skyhawks face the Tri-City Rush for the 3rd time this season. In week 3, Tri City won 65-13. But, their next meeting in late May, the Skyhawks significantly closed the point-margin gap--still losing 43-20. That was actually the last time Tri-City played. They've been waiting for over a month to have an opponent for the championship. The Skyhawks have had 3 matchups since that time, going 2-1. If they are to have an advantage, it would be that they're in their groove. No doubt the Tri-City Rush have been practicing within that time, but going 5 weeks without a matchup could manifest a little rusty play early in the game. This matchup looks to be more and more interesting.
Given the red and green colors being touted by these teams, it feels a little like Christmas in July, especially for Northwestern inhabitants. While most of arena/indoor football gets played on the East Coast and the Midwest, it seems to be very lacking on the West Coast. Not today. The state of Washington will be holding an epic battle tonight to crown a champion in the NorthWest. What the future holds for this league and these teams is unclear, but it's satisfying to report that they've made notable improvement, and that improvement is coming during a challenging Covid recovery, inflation, and it's in Spring Football that is beginning to be over-saturated. When it comes to elevating and contributing to the game of arena football, I find myself rooting for these organizations to take the next step. Game on!
By Ducon Williams
While the current forecast of professional football in Bismarck looks like a dismal, dark night, fans look for a flicker of hope to shine a warm light on their brand. It's no secret that the Bismarck Bucks of the Indoor Football League have shocked fans for the wrong reasons lately. After a 7-8 regular season a year ago, and a playoff trip that ended at Massachusetts to a Pirates team that went on to win the United Bowl--things looked decent. Then, the start of 2022 looked decent. In the first 3 weeks, the Bucks beat the Green Bay Blizzard twice and had a Chase Allbaugh deuce tie the game in the Battle of the Dakota's. His deuce would have tied the game up at 38 against a Sioux Falls Storm team that Bismarck has never beat in their history. The problem? Coach Kurtiss Riggs called a timeout to ice the kicker on a deuce attempt! That's a first! He missed the next attempt and later had a field goal attempt to win the game by one. It was blocked! Storm win 38-36, but Bismarck cemented themselves as a viable foe....or so we thought.
After another loss at Massachusetts, the Bucks went to San Jose and routed the Bay Area Panthers 76-46! 76 points in one game is no small feat on the road. Bismarck looked good! Then.......the downfall. It took them 3 1/2 games to get another 76 points. They looked stagnant on offense putting up 17 on Quad City, and then Green Bay, a team Bismarck had won 6 straight times, comes into town and routs the Bucks 55-14.
From there, Bismarck would lose 3 straight road games by one score. Every game, they were in the hunt. But let's be honest: Bucks get hunted every year. Whether you ARE game, or IN the game, the name Bucks just tends to lead to death, or defeat.
At times, Bismarck has shown great heart in fighting to the bitter end. 5 of their 12 losses were by one score. It seems that no matter where the Bucks turn, the Bucks stop there. What's behind all of this? What's behind the last two years where Bismarck starts hot, then declines? Is it the constant switch in personnel? Whenever a player has a bad game, he gets benched or released? Whenever a kicker misses a pair of PAT's, the kicker gets no more attempts for the game? Whatever happened to Tahj Tolbert? At least Bismarck was 3-7 with him; 0-5 since he was released. It's hard to say, really.
To be fair, the coaches know what they are dealing with better than any passionate fan could. The small town of Bismarck, amid the plains of the North Dakota prairie isn't exactly the tourist attraction that would excite the best athletes to come play. Most people probably haven't heard of Bismarck since their fifth-grade geography class. I'm just glad they have a professional football team! They don't lack in the entertainment department, and the coaches may have obstacles that most couldn't hardly handle. Still, in the mind of many of the fans, we wonder what can be done different. After 10 straight losses and a trip to Northern Arizona, to play the league-leading Wrangler defense, it's been a dismal end to what seemed to be hopeful at first.
While the fans may be holding their heads low, we certainly hope that Rod Miller and his coaching staff are holding their heads high and will right the ship. The Ship, after all, is what they have in their scope. Other IFL teams might have Bucks in their scope with their finger on the trigger, but perhaps Miller and Company will have set up a decoy and will hunt the hunters in 2023. Don't give up hope!
By Ducon Williams
For a team that's used to winning championships, being #4 in their conference with a losing record, must be unfamiliar territory. The Duke City Gladiators find themselves fighting for a playoff spot with a VERY deceptive 6-8 record in the Western Conference of the Indoor Football League.
Their nickname, "Gladiators", bears an interesting parallel with the history of gladiators, themselves. According to multiple sources, gladiators were slave warriors who would often fight to the death in a large arena, while spectators watched. In many cases, they were rarely expected to win as their opponents were often given greater resources in the form of armor, weapons, and sometimes horses and chariots--and the favor of emperors and senators. On the rare occasion that the slave gladiators won, it was an utter surprise to the spectators attending the games. In the movie, Gladiator, Maximus, played by Russell Crowe, wins in a match which has the spectators dropping their jaws to the floor in disbelief. He yells out, "Are you not entertained?!" Yes, Maximus, Dello Davis, Jayson Serda, Byron Cooper, Sherman Carter, Greg Dent and many other Gladiators. We are VERY entertained! Some of the most intense matchups all season have included the Duke City Gladiators. Some of the most wild finishes one could ever conceive have come from the hands of these warriors.
However, with a 6-8 record, many believe they're not a viable playoff contender. A 58-55 loss in the Semis to Arizona a season ago seems like a distant memory. A controversial no-call in the end zone, followed by a missed field goal doomed the Gladiators to defeat, leaving Quarterback Nate Davis to question why he wasn't given the shot to score on the final play. He did, after all, break the TD passes record in the IFL last year.
Fast-forward to this year. Expectations were high that the Gladiators would give the Rattlers a run for their money in the Western Conference. The first game was highlighted as Duke City returned to Phoenix to face their newly-hated rival. After an intense first half, the Rattlers led 29-28 in what seemed to be anybody's game. Then..........a season-ending injury to quarterback Nate Davis. Then........a 60-33 defeat at the hands of the Frisco Fighters, followed by another loss to Arizona in Albuquerque. At 0-3, the Gladiators appeared to be looking for answers, and looking for a quarterback to stick with for the remaining of the season. Nate Davis was promoted to Offensive Coordinator. Suddenly, the Gladiators were in the hunt. Ramone Atkins rose to the occasion, and the defense started holding their own.
Some vocal internet hecklers don't believe the Gladiators will be a threat in the playoffs. Some cite the fact that the teams Duke City has won, don't have very good records. After all, they beat the 1-12 Bay Area Panthers twice and the San Diego Strike Force, who currently sit at 3-10. If you add the current records up, of all the teams Duke City has won, they combine for 26 wins to 53 losses. It appears, by this number, that the Gladiators aren't very good--mediocre at best. However, there's another part to the story that you might not have noticed.
Gladiator Losses - To Whom?
If we were to add up the records (yes including every time they've played the same team) of the teams that the Duke City Gladiators have lost to--and by how much, we might see a story similar to Roman history. Whether the Emperors and Senators of the IFL scheduling did this on purpose or not, is not for me to say. However, like the gladiators of ancient Rome, these Duke City Gladiators were given opponents that would likely seal the doom of the slave warriors this season. Let's observe who they've lost to:
First, the 11-3 Rattlers, thrice! Next, the 12-2 Fighters, thrice! Two of those times were by 1 point! One of those times was on a final play that is still being debated, where Quarterback TJ Edwards was awarded a touchdown as time expired. Some say his knee was down before the ball crossed the plane. Some say it wasn't. It could have been called either way and still debated. If the refs would have called him down, the Gladiators come away with a 46-41 win rather than a 47-46 loss. They're now 7-7. But alas, the call was made.
Let's look at another road loss by 1 point. Duke City scores a touchdown with 5 seconds remaining. They're leading 41-40. Then, the unbelievable happens. The extra point is blocked and returned by Tucson Sugar Skulls', White, for a 2-point return. Tucson wins 42-41 in one of the most bizarre finishes of all time. And let's not forget the Glads were up 41-28 at Northern Arizona this last week, with 5 1/2 minutes to play, and a pair of onside kick recoveries helped NAZ win it 49-41. Oh, they're 11-2 by the way. First place in the Western Conference--and it was at their house. So what's the point?
The point is: their record is deceptive. They're way better than it shows. They've had by far the most difficult schedule this season!
- 7 of their 8 losses come from teams with double digit wins. All their losses come from teams with winning records (Frisco and Arizona are the only others)!
- ALL of their losses come from teams that have already clinched playoff berths.
-Half of their losses were by one score.
-All their opponents records combine to 113-76. The Gladiators have 2 games remaining at San Diego and home versus NAZ.
-They're the only team in the league to have played the top 4 teams (currently). Those opponents have made up HALF of their schedule. After playing NAZ in the season finale, 9 of their 16 games will have been from the top 4 teams in the league.
-They beat the defending champs, Mass, and have hung tight with every opponent they've played except for Arizona.
So even if they end up 7-9 in the playoffs, they may have as good a chance as anyone to punch a ticket to the United Bowl. If anything can be said negative about the Gladiator's on-field play, it would be they need to finish games! In games that were decided by one score, they are currently 3-4. They may be 6-8, but they are three measly plays away from being 9-5. Watch out! Because they're not going to give up. Like the gladiators of old, they are well aware that they must fight to the death--and nothing motivates warriors like the fear of death!
By Ducon Williams
Fighters fly through Blizzard
Photo by Sam Valenti
FRISCO, Texas - From the start, it was apparent that this wasn’t going to be a good night for the Green Bay Blizzard.
On their first play from scrimmage, the center snapped the ball past quarterback Jack Sheehan into the end zone. The Blizzard fell on it, but the Frisco Fighters had recorded a safety. Those first two points were the first of 50 as the Fighters dominated the Blizzard 50-27 in front of their home fans.
The best team in the Eastern Conference showed why they are in that position by getting out to a 36-14 halftime lead, which led to a breezy second half. Frisco quarterback T.J. Edwards shined bright once again with a masterful performance, throwing for three touchdowns and rushing for another. All three of Edward’s touchdown passes were caught by Jerminic Smith, who’s emerged as one of the best receivers in the IFL this season.
Another standout for the Fighters was running back Ed Wesley, who recorded two rushing touchdowns. Wesley had the difficult task of starting in place of Justin Rankin, the leading rusher in the IFL, but he made the most of his opportunity and contributed mightily to the victory.
On the other side of the contest, Green Bay was unable to keep their momentum going after an impressive 42-40 win over Sioux Falls last week. The Blizzard offense was inconsistent, and their defense was unable to mitigate the Fighters offensive attack.
With the victory, Frisco has now won seven straight games and have swept Green Bay this season after defeating them 38-36 in their previous meeting. The Fighters are getting closer to clinching the #1 seed in the east for the playoffs, while the Blizzard will definitely need some help if they want to sneak in.
Frisco will play next against the Quad City Steamwheelers while Green Bay will also return in two weeks to go up against the Sioux Falls Storm.