Massachusetts Pirates star quarterback Sean Brackett will not play this Saturday August 4th against the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks. Word came late today from Pirate management that Darron Thomas will get the start at quarterback. After Brackett suffered a leg injury early in Saturday’s tilt against the Sharks, backup quarterback Darron Thomas threw for one touchdown and five interceptions. Pirates front office assures Pirate Nation Thomas will be ready to go Saturday!
Exclusive for Arena Football Talk from Massachusetts Pirates owner Jawad Yatim:
"Sean [Brackett] is dealing with a lower leg injury that he has been treating and attacking every day through rehab and rest. We expect him to continue to do the same and we are approaching this week to week. Darron will be starting this week, and with a full week of reps with the 1's we expect his timing to be more precise, and we look forward to Darron playing well for us."
Playoff positioning is dependant on how the Pirates finish the regular season and a win would improve their chance of the all-important home field advantage. Pirates face off against the Steelhawks in Worcester, MA this Saturday August 4th at 7pm broadcasted on YouTube Live!!
By RJ Ciancio
The 0-13 Lehigh Valley Steelhawks played host the Carolina Cobras in the Steelhawks’ final home game of the season. Lehigh Valley is still seeking their first win of the season while the Cobras were trying to further their chances of hosting a National Arena League (NAL) playoff game.
Carolina’s first drive looked weak at first as Charles McCullum couldn’t get the team past the first down marker. On fourth down McCullum was intercepted by Marquez Gollum. However, the play would be nullified due to an illegal defense penalty gave the the Cobras a new set of down. Marquez Gollum then spread the ball like around as he found Phillip Barnett and then Jordan Jolly for a touchdown reception. With Craig Peterson’s extra point, the Cobras lead 7-0.
Peterson’s kickoff split the uprights for a deuce, making it 9-0 Carolina. Caleb Walton began leading the Steelhawks down the field as Walton until a third and three play where he muffed the snap. Luckily for the Steelhawks Darrell Bogan was able to fall on the football. Spencer Hotaling nailed a 45-yard field goal making it 9-3 Carolina.
The Cobras then struck quickly as two plays into the drive, McCullum found Jolly for one-handed touchdown grab. With the extra point the score read 16-3.
Peterson’s kickoff went out of the endzone giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own 20. Caleb Walton once again struggled to move the ball. Part way through the drive Caleb Walton was hurt. On fourth down Spencer Hotaling converted a 41-yard kick making it 16-3 Cobras.
Hotaling’s ensuing kickoff was short, giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own 20. On first down McCullum found Jordan Jolly on a short pass that was knocked out by Dante Holmes and Lehigh Valley recovered.
Patrick Ryan took over for an injured Caleb Walton. Ryan rallied the team as he lead them to a touchdown. The extra point was blocked making it 16-12 Cobras. After the drive ended Caleb walton was able to return to the bench area.
Spencer Hotaling’s kickoff missed the deuce attempt and the drive started at the Cobras 20. McCullum continued to prosper. On 2nd and 10 McCullum found Fabian Guerra for an easy touchdown. With the extra point the score read 23-12 Carolina.
Craig Peterson continued to rack up points for the Cobras as he kicked another deuce making it 25-12 Cobras. Caleb walton returned to the field. The offense struggled as his pass was dropped by two different receivers and overthrew another one. On fourth down lineman Peter Borum was injured on the play.
After the turnover on downs, McCullum handed the ball off to Jugg Russell on first and goal for an 8 yard touchdown run. With the successful extra point the score read 32-12 with Carolina in the lead.
Peterson’s kickoff missed the uprights giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own twenty. On the second play of the drive Walton was intercepted and the pass was returned for the pick-six. The extra point was blocked by Donte Holmes, making the score 38-12 Cobras.
Peterson’s kickoff was just short of a deuce, giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own twenty. The drive was going well for the Steelhawks until Caleb Walton was once again intercepted. Darrell Bogan was hurt on the play.
The ensuing Cobras drive would start of their own twenty. On first and ten, McCullum’s pass was nearly intercepted. McCullum wasn’t able to escape his dangerous pases getiing close to the defenders as her was eventually intercepted by Saveon brown in the endzone. Walton was able to find Charles McClain for a 37-yard bomb for a touchdown. The extra point was good making it 39-19 Carolina.
Hotaling’s kickoff went for a deuce making it 38-21 Cobras. On first and 10 from their own 5 Jolly caught a short pass and then the Cobras let the clock run out to end the first half.
Craig Peterson’s kickoff to start the second half hit the scoreboard giving Lehigh valley the ball at their own twenty yard-line. Caleb Walton was able to bring the Steelhakws down the field and was able to lead the team to the endzone where he scored on a running play. With the extra point splitting the uprights making it 38-28 Cobras.
It was from that point on the Steelhawks defense was pummeled as Carolina scored 41 unanswered points. By the end of the game, both teams were tired and playing overall, sloppy football.
The Cobras were able to rout the Steelhawks en route to the NAL Playoffs. With only one week left in the regular season Billy Back will have to make the hard choice of how to approach the final week of the regular season as the Cobras currently are currently the NAL’s number three seed as they fight to be the host of a NAL playoff game.
Lehigh Valley is now trying to avoid becoming the team with the worst record in NAL history (that current title is held by the 2017 Corpus Christi Rage who went 0-9). All that's left to to do is end the season and get a fresh start for the 2019 Season.
By Aaron Castete
Recently the Atlanta Havoc of the American Arena League announced they'd be leaving Buford, Georgia , which is located about an hour from the center of Atlanta, and that they'd be moving to Florence, South Carolina. With the Havoc's move to a new city, Atlanta is now a wide open market for the National Arena League to add to their high caliber league. Before the Atlanta Havoc formed, there was rumors that the NAL could have been looking into the Atlanta/Gwinnett area, but backed off when the Havoc came about.
In a business standpoint, the city of Atlanta would geographically fit perfect in the mix of the teams on the East Coast. Also National Sports Ventures LLC, which owns the Carolina Cobras and the Maine Mammoths of the NAL, is based in Atlanta. Could the National Sports Ventures group add a team in the city they are based in? It would be a logical move for the group.
Atlanta is a perfect market for the game of arena football. With the NAL rapidly growing and having so much success, a market like Atlanta would only help them grow even more. In the past, the AFL had a franchise called the Georgia Force in Gwinnett (a suburb area of ATL). The Force played in the Arena at the Infinite Energy Center from 2002-2008 and 2011-2012. The team's ownership used an excuse to the team suspending operations citing: "Atlanta is simply not a football town". The statement made was very untrue and fans new it. The NFL's Atlanta Falcons are such a very successful team, the Georgia Tech football program is improving, youth football is gaining interest; the city of Atlanta is for sure a football town!
The Havoc failed for many reasons, one being their small town not in Atlanta:
You may be wondering why should the NAL go to this market if there was recently an AAL team there. Well here's the thing, the Atlanta Havoc technically didn't play in the City of Atlanta, they played an whole hour away from Atlanta actually! The games were played in a small town named Buford, Georgia in a 3000 seat high school venue. The small market posed many issues for the team as they struggled with money and attendance. First off if a team wanted to be successful in the long run, extensive marketing would have been done, and a better venue in a higher populated location would have been chosen.
What venues could be potential homes for a NAL team?:
If the NAL does come to Atlanta, there are two venues where the sport of arena football could be extremely successful., they are the Phillips Arena (home of the NBA Atlanta Hawks) or the Infinite Energy Center.
The Phillips Arena can hold 18, 545 for arena football, whereas the Infinite Energy Center can hold 11, 355, Financially, the Infinite Energy Center would be way less expensive for the NAL to choose from, yet the venue is 42 minutes from the heart of downtown. Even though Gwinnett is almost an hour from Atlanta, it is a market that has proven it can support teams, draw crowds, and be successful, whereas Buford's small populated city could not. Gwinnett county has a great successful population of sports fans who support a minor league baseball team, minor league hockey team, and a professional arena lacrosse team. All signs point toward the success of another arena football team in Atlanta, and it hopefully will be a matter of time before the NAL compromises on the opportunity at hand.
By Aaron Castete
About a month ago, a website and Facebook page surfaced in the arena football community, when arena football coach Rick Marsillo posted on Facebook about a NY Streets tryout. The tryout took place on June 23rd at the NFL's New York Jets practice facility. Slowly but steadily, the team's legitimacy grew, as the team's owner, head coach, and director of player personnel were revealed on their website. As the weeks went by, more activity was taking place on their Facebook page, including interviews and tryout footage.
The Streets are committed to joining the National Arena League for 2019, and have already gotten an early start on tryouts, staff, and social media. Normally the league tries to keep expansion news quiet, but the Streets organization appeared to want an early start advantage above other potential expansion sites.
The Team's Staff:
The New York Streets have 3 staff members listed on their website, and we will break down each of the three.
Corey Galloway (Owner)
-He founded Legacy Growth Partners, LLC, a private investment firm with investments in entertainment, manufacturing and real estate. In the past, he does have experience with team ownership. as he owned the Harrisburg Stampede who played in the PIFL. With the Stampede, he aided in the facility negotiating, built out financial models, produced games from the floor and dealt with merchandising.
Rick Marsillo (Head Coach and Assistant GM)
-Rick has a great history in Arena football operations and coaching. He was the Head Coach of the York Capitals during 2015 and 2016 when the team moved to Harrisburg, Pa and competed as the Central Penn Capitals. After he made major adjustments to the team, they went on to undefeated season (10-0) leading the league in every stat, as they made their way to the American Indoor Football (AIF) Championship. Also he worked for the Harrisburg Stampede in the PIFL for a total of 8 seasons in numerous positions. He worked his way up in the organization and was involved with the following roles combined over his 8 seasons: Assistant General Manager, Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator.
DeValle Ellis (Director of Player Personnel)
-Ellis is a former NFL player who played a total of 3 seasons in the league, as he played for the Lions two seasons, and the Browns in one season. His last season. which was in 2009 with the Browns, abruptly ended when he was waived on July 26, 2009. As a native of Brooklyn, Ellis returns to peruse helping the Streets team succeed.
Potential Other Involved
-Could Marques Colston be involved with the franchise? As a former owner of the Harrisburg Stampede, he could re-unite with Marsillo and Galloway to make this Streets team successful. Consider this though, Colston is an owner of the Albany Empire and the Philadelphia Soul who are in the Arena Football League. Could this mean that Colston will leave those teams to join the Streets as an owner, will the Soul and Empire make a switch to the NAL, there are so many scenarios. Marques Colston was spotted on an interview on the Streets Facebook page at the tryout event.
Brooklyn appears to be the team's destination:
-There are so many things that point us to the direction that the Streets will reside in Brooklyn. First off, look at the team colors; they match up with the colors of the NBA's Brooklyn Nets and their venue the Barclays Center. Secondly, the team staff has mentioned Brooklyn many times as the team's home, and Galloway and Ellis are both from Brooklyn. Also the team announced their own new practice facility at PacPlex in Brooklyn, NY, which is another reason that points towards Brooklyn being their home. It would be logical that Galloway wants to return home with Ellis to start this new franchise, which is destined for success.
More NAL Expansion and Eastern & Western Conferences rumored?:
-As you may remember, a trademark was filed on Monday May 21st by National Sports Ventures LLC which is the National Arena League. The trademark was registered as "Nashville Kats", which confirms arena football is headed back to Nashville and the Kats are returning, but this time it'll be in the NAL. National Sports Ventures LLC had registered the Maine Mammoths and Carolina Cobras names months before the team's names were announced previously in 2017. Since 2017, Nashville has been one of many rumored markets to join the league. Sources reported that the Nashville team was on the brink of playing in 2018, but decided to hold off for more preparation.
Nashville and New York are the two known expansion markets at this time, with lots more in the works, such as one in Florida which is rumored to be Tampa or Orlando. Also the Monterrey Steel are set to potentially make their return in 2019, as it has been hinted at by the team's dance page which has told fans the team will return in 2019.
New York Dragons still in the mix?:
Last off-season the AFT staff was the first group to discover the New York Dragons trademark that the NAL filed. Geographically, two New York area teams would pose for a huge rivalry, and big success for the league. Could the New York Dragons still be in the works, or is this the group that was trying to bring them back but decided to go with a different name? There are lots of possibilities with this situation, and either way it has a positive connotation for the NAL.
If the Dragons are still in works, the home of the team is clear, and the venue is known. The team would undoubtedly play at the newly renovated Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, which was the former home of the team.
With the Duke City Gladiators recently being crowned champions in the Champions Bowl, the off-season leading into the 2019 season is now in full swing.
During the back half of the CIF season it was announced that the West Michigan Ironmen will be re-joining the CIF in 2019. Now there are reports that the CIF is going to expand to Oklahoma City.
In a press conference posted on the Champions Indoor Football Facebook page, the Oklahoma community welcomed this brand new football franchise. This is the first time since 2018 indoor football has came to Oklahoma. Back when there was the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgz from 2004-2010.
More information still to come on what will the team be called and which players will be added to the team roster. Stay tuned with Arena Football Talk with more information.
In what can only be described as a miracle on the blue turf, the Massachusetts Pirates pulled off a big win over the Carolina Cobras. I’ll forego the specific details in lieu of my recommendation to fire up the computer and watch it for yourself.
Sean Brackett and the Pirates have pulled off some amazing last minute heroics in their debut season, but this one will go down as the best. With only a minute left in the game and down by 3 (50-53) Brackett and company march down the field. From the 9 yard line and 5.8 seconds left-a pass to Levon Pearson gains 2 and a half yards. This leaves Bracket with 1.7 seconds just inside the 7 yard line. Does Coach Ameer Ismail go for the game tying field goal? Yeah, right! This is the Pirates…
Brackett breaks the huddle and turns to the so-called 9th man (the hysterical Worcester fans) and pumps them up with a couple of arms waves. He returns to the far hashmark, with Mardy Gilyard on the near side boards, Brown on the far side and Pearson in the middle. Brown goes in motion, around Brackett and up the middle. After the snap, Brackett takes two steps back and unloads a high-ball deep into the far corner of the DCU Center to a wide open Devonn Brown for an “OMG, DID HE JUST CATCH THAT?!” touchdown. A greater sight in football I can’t recall.
Kudos to the boys in blue who keep us Arena Football fans on the edge of our seats with big plays and big wins!! Next week, the Pirates travel to Jacksonville, Florida for a faceoff with the Sharks as the number one team in the National Arena League. Tune into NAL Youtube channel at 7pm for all the action!
It was Halloween in July last night as the Carolina Cobras hosted the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks. The Cobras gave the Steelhawks a night of terror as the offense scored seven touchdowns, the defense scored two touchdowns and three safties, and the special teams added to deuces to give the Cobras a 78-9 victory. The only scare for the Cobras was when quarterback, Charles McCullum, went down in the 2nd quarter with a back injury that sidelined him for the night.
Carolina opened the game in dominating fashion. After receiving the opening kickoff, McCullum would find Jordan Jolly for the first touchdown of the game. After a successful PAT by Craig Peterson, the Steelhawks would give the ball back to Carolina on downs. The offense was not able to put the ball in the endzone on this drive but Peterson would add a 39-yard field goal. A miscommunication by Lehigh Valley on the first play on the ensuing drive would lead to a Cedric Poole interception, giving the Cobras the ball on Lehigh's 18. McCullum would strike again on the Cobras next drive, finding Phillip Barnett for a 28-yard score. Peterson would add the PAT and the deuce on the kickoff. Anthony Ellis would take a fumbled snap by the Steelhawks back for a score as time expired in the 1st quarter.
Peterson ended the 1st quarter with a PAT and started the 2nd with a deuce. After recovering another fumbled snap on the Lehigh 4, McCullum would fumbe the ball back to the Steelhawks. Palmer would break through the offensive line for a safety. McCullum would find Barnett for a 14-yard touchdown on the Cobras drive and Ellis would find pick up another fumble recovery for a touchdown with Peterson adding the PAT after each. The scare of the night for Cobra fans came on the offenses next drive. Lehigh Valley would get after McCullum, causing him to bruise his back and sidelining him for the remainder of the night. Fans would see both Tyrell Goodman and Jordan Jolly share the snaps for the rest of the game. After a pick by Ken Walton, Jolly would throw one of his own. The Steelhawks would also have quarterbacks sharing the snaps for the 2nd half of football. Lehigh kicker, Spencer Hotaling would miss a 38-yard field goal as the first half of football ended with the Cobras leading 46-0.
Jolly would score twice in the third quarter once on a 2-yard quarterback keeper and then on a bulet pass between two defenders to Goodman. The 3rd quarter would also produce the only points of the night for the Steelhawks on a 42-yard touchdown from Derrick Macon to Daryl Boggan. With Hotaling adding the PAT and deuce making the score 62-9 to begin the 4th quarter.
A relatively quiet 4th quarter, fans would see a 24-yard field goal from Peterson and Jolly connecting with Goodman on a touchdown and running another one across from one yard out. A rare missed PAT by Peterson would make the final score 78-9 and giving the Cobras a spot in the playoffs.
The Cobras travel to Massachusetts next week to face the Pirates who are now #1 with the Lions losing to the Mammoths this weekend. Showing that even though the regular season is winding down, the intensity is not.
By RJ Ciancio
The 7-4 Carolina Cobras played host to the 0-11 Lehigh Valley Steelhawks. The Cobras attempted to take the number two seed and secure a playoff spot in the National Arena League (NAL) Playoffs while Lehigh Valley is still seeking their first win of the year. The Steelhawks entered the game with no healthy quarterbacks and wide receiver Yousef Reddick missed the team bus and couldn’t make the game.
Lehigh Valley used Patrick Ryan and Derrick Macon as quarterbacks, both of whom were playing out of position. Quarterback-Center exchanges plagued the team and a lack of depth at the receiver position due to the need for emergency quarterbacks and Youssef Reddick missing the game.
Meanwhile, Carolina continued spread the ball like butter on bread and touchdowns came aplenty as Anthony Ellis, Jordan Jolly and Phillip Barnett all found the end zone. One of the many first half highlights was when Craig Peterson broke the NAL single season deuce record.
However, the Cobras had a major scare late in the first half as Charles McCullum left the game with a back bruise (he would not return to the game). Jordan Jolly, a former college quarterback took the field and struggled a bit before he showed that the Cobras have a very good backup quarterback who can step up when he needs to.
By the end of the game the Carolina Cobras scored the most points in franchise history with 78 while Lehigh Valley was only able to put up 9. The Cobras have a major upside as this is the team’s first season and they have a good shot at the NAL Championship.
The Steelhawks need to find themselves a stable offensive line and discipline the team more as they commit countless unnecessary penalties and their drives constantly sputter out. They have a good bit of work to do in the off-season.
By Christopher Mabry
Last night was the IFL's United Bowl game between the Sioux Falls Storm and Iowa Barnstormers. The 2018 United Bowl between these two teams was played at the Wells Fargo Arena. Before the game can start, let’s take a look at their championship past and the road they traveled to get here.
The Sioux Falls Storm played their first game in 2000 and did not join the Indoor Football League until the 2011 season. Since coming to the IFL, the Storm has been to every United Bowl game. Seven to be exact. Out of those seven games the Sioux Falls Storm has won six out of those seven, Sioux Falls has won six of them. Last year, the streak came to an end as the Arizona Rattlers won the United Bowl in their first season.
Now, in 2018, the Sioux Falls Storm are looking for their seventh championship title under their belt. During the 2018 regular season, the Storm finished 11-3. They played in the IFL playoff game against the Nebraska Danger. In a close game the Storm defeated the Danger to advance to the United Bowl. Sioux Falls opponent are the iconic indoor/arena team the Iowa Barnstormers.
Established in 1995, the Iowa Barnstormers lost in their first championship game appearance in the Arena Bowl to another Storm team…that is the Tampa Bay Storm. Now, the Barnstormers are looking to go back to their championship form. Can they pull off the greatest victory?
Inside the Wells Fargo Arena, over 15 thousand Iowa Barnstormer fans flocked to watch an epic game go down. Early on in the first half, when the Iowa Barnstormers had control of the ball, quarterback Drew Powell would keep control of the ball. By the time the Storm has control of the ball, the quarter would almost be over. Halftime came quickly. At the halfway point of the game, the Barnstormers were leading the Storm 21-17.
When the game resumed in the third quarter, tempers started to boil over. Iowa almost had some players ejected and on a critical fourth down play, Barnstormers quarterback Drew Powell flicked the ball to one of his receivers and the receiver threw the ball in the stands. After the play was over, the refs threw the penalty flag on the Barnstormers side because the receiver left the pocket when he threw the ball. The only way he could have thrown the ball is when he is in the pocket.
Even though that was a critical penalty cause it was a spot foul, it did not hurt the Barnstormers to bad. When the game reached all zeroes, the Iowa Barnstormers defeated the Sioux Falls Storm 42-38.
Congratulations to the Iowa Barnstormers on becoming 2018 Indoor Football League champions from everyone here at Arena Football Talk.
By RJ Ciancio
The 0-10 Lehigh Valley Steelhawks went into their game versus the 8-4 Massachusetts Pirates still looking for their first victory of the season. Meanwhile the Pirates are looking to hold onto the number one seed in the National Arena League.
The opening kickoff by Ali Mourtada weant out of the endzone giving Lehigh Valley the ball on their own 20 to start the drive. Caleb Walton was looking sharp out of the gate as he spread the ball across the field. The drive concluded with Caleb Walton finding lineman Peter Borum for a five yard touchdown reception. Spencer Hotaling’s extra point was good making it 7-0 Steelhawks.
Massachusetts first drive started on their own 20. Sean Brackett led Massachusetts down the field as he dink and dunked his way down the field in a drive that ended with Brackett finding lineman Cornelius Lewis for a touchdown. The extra point by Mourtada was good tying the game at seven a piece.
Lehigh Valley’s next drive started on their own 20. Caleb Walton went cold as and resorted to dunk passes. The drive sputtered out and ended with Hotaling missing a field goal attempt.
Sean Brackett quickly led the Pirates down the field as he found Desaen Johnson for a 20 yard bomb and capped off the dive with a touchdown pass to Mardy Gilyard. Mourtada’s extra point was good making the score Pirates 14, Steelhawks 7.
Ali Mourtada’s kickoff was returned by Yusef Reddick out to the Steelhawks 15. Walton began leading the team down the field with FJ Williams and Reginald White. A sure first down was dropped by Charles McClain. When fourth down came around the Steelhawks elected to go for it. Lehigh Valley would proceed to turn the ball over on downs, ending a promising drive.
Massachusetts’ drive started at their own 20. For the first time in the game Bones Brigante was prominent as he caught three Sean Brackett passes including the drive concluding touchdown. However Mourtada missed the extra point making it 20-7 Pirates.
The ensuing kickoff went over the dsherboards giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own 20. On the first play of the drive Caleb Walton found Yusef Reddick for a play that ended inside the Pirates five. Caleb Walton ran a quarterback sneak and scored a touchdown. The extra point by Spencer Hotaling was good making the score 20-14 Pirates.
Hotaling’s kick weant for a duce making it 20-16 Pirates. On first and 10 from their own five Von Pearson dropped a sure touchdown. The Pirates began working their way down the down the field. The drive concluded with Brackett finding Bones Brigante for a 20-yard touchdown. On the two point attempt Darren Thomas handed the ball of to Gilyard for the two points. The score read 28-16 Pirates.
Mourtada’s kickoff went into the seats giving the Steelhawks the ball at thier own 20 yard line. After working their way down the field, a pass to FJ Williams was batted up and Kiante Northington ran it back for the pick-six. With Mourtada’s extra point the score read 35-16 Pirates.
Ali Mourtada’s kickoff went through uprights for a deuce, making the score 37-16 Pirates. On first and ten from their own five FJ Williams dropped another pass. On second down, Caleb Walton was intercepted by Khaled Wooton who returned the ball for a touchdown. The extra point was good making it 43-16 Pirates.
Once again Ali Mourtada kicked another deuce making it 45-16 Pirates. With the ball on their own five. The Steelhawks methodically worked their way down the field and Caleb Walton ran into the endzone as the half ended with the score reading 22-45 Pirates.
Spencer Hotaling’s kick to start the second half weant out the back of the endzone giving the Pirates the ball at their own 20. Sean Brackett began leading the team down the field before the drive died out and failed a fourth down conversion as a pass was batted down in the endzone.
With the ball on their own 10 Lehigh Valley began working their way down the field. The drive had seemed to stall out the Pirates were called for illegal defense, giveing the Steelhawks a new set of downs. The drive ended with the Caleb Walton finding Darrell Bogan for a touchdown making it 28-45 Pirates, but the extra point by Hotaling was no good.
The kickoff went out the endzone giving the Pirates the ball at their own 20. Sean Brackett continued finding Bones Bagaunte and he caught for a long gain. Then Bagaunte dropped a pass. On third and goal the Pirates botched the snap and fell on it. On fourth and goal Ali Mourtada’s 26 yard kick split the uprights making it Pirates 48, Steelhawks 28.
Mourtada’s kickoff went out the back of the endzone giving the Steelhawks the ball at their own 20. The Steelhawks methodically worked their way down the field, but on fourth down Caleb Walton overthrew Yusef Reddick, turning the ball over on downs in the process.
Massachusetts blended run and pass elements together amazingly. The drive ended with a 32 yard touchdown pass to Bones Baganute. With the extra point the score readi 55-28 Pirates.
Ali Mourtada’s kickoff went out the back of the endzone giving Lehigh Valley the ball at their own 20. Caleb Walton attempted to lead the team down the field but he threw the ball into the stands on first down and overthrew his targets on second an third down. On fourth down Walton was dropped for a major loss and turned the ball over on downs.
The Pirates made a quarterback change and Darren Thomas’ first snap had was mishandled and Leroy Naysmith pik up the ball and scampered into the endzone for a touchdown making it 34-55 Pirates. The extra point was good and the score read 62-35.
Hotaling’s kickoff went out of the endzone giving the Pirates the ball at their own 20. Thomas proceeded to lead the Pirates down the field on a drive that was capped off by a five yard touchdown pass to Devon Brown. With the extra point the Pirates extended their lead to 62-35.
Mourtada’s kickoff went out the back of the endzone give Lehigh Valley the ball on their own 20. The Steelhawks began working their way down the field but the drive slowed down before collapsing as Norrington intercepted a pass in the endzone on fourth down.
The Pirates used their final drive to run out the clock and the final score read 62-35 Pirates. Massachusetts have a high powered offense and a decant defense to boot. They also control if they will have a home playoff game.
Lehigh Valley’s game was hindered by injuries and Caleb Walton is improving. If the team stays healthy and mistake free they can win a game.