TAMPA BAY - After a back and forth game, the Tampa Bay Storm (6-6) win in front of 11,000 fans in the Tampa Bay Times Forum against the Philadelphia Soul (6-6), 56-49.
The Soul were marching into Tampa Bay’s end zone with about 1min left. The Storm’s defense however, put pressure on the Soul’s offense and eventually sacked QB Dan Raudabaugh for a turnover on downs with the score tied up at 49. Since then, Storm QB Randy Hippeard constantly advanced the ball and threw a 28-yard touchdown to TT Tolliver to give them the 56-49 lead. With about 0:46 seconds left, Raudabaugh and company were looking to possibly force their second overtime on the year. Fortunately for Tampa Bay, Soul WR Ryan McDaniel couldn’t haul in a 11 yard pass from Raudabaugh with 0:02 seconds on the clock to give the Storm their third-straight victory. In addition, the Storm outscored the Soul 22-0 in the fourth quarter.
“We made enough plays to win this game,” Coach Dolezel said after the game. “But we have to win the fourth quarter and finish. We didn’t do that tonight.”
Aside from the late game touchdown, QB Randy Hippeard refused to let up for his team. Hippeard went 14-26, threw 217 yards, 7 touchdowns and 1 interception.
As for the Soul, Raudabaugh finished the night by going 30-47, threw for 357 yards, four touchdowns and one interception.
Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the game, FB Derrick Ross made AFL history in the second quarter. Ross passed FB Barry Wagner for most career touchdowns at 127. Ross finished the game with 27 yards, 3 touchdowns and now a total of 129 career touchdowns.
This loss hurt the Soul terribly because they lost the tiebreaker between the Storm. According to ArenaFan, if there is a tie between the Storm and the Soul at the end of the season, Tampa Bay would make the playoffs.
Not only is that scenario an issue for the Soul, but the fact that if Iowa wins against Cleveland, it will put the Soul in a crucial spot at 4th.
The Soul will look to regroup themselves for their next game against the Pittsburgh Power at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The game is set to kickoff at 6:00pm ET on ESPN 3 and The Comcast Network.