Spokane suffered a heartbreaking loss in a game it appeared to have in control of inside the last minute.
The Blaze recovered an onside kick and capitalized with Tommy Grady's ninth touchdown pass and Tysson Poots' fifth TD catch to overtake the Shock 58-55. Utah scored two touchdowns in the last 27 seconds.
My unedited game story is below. It includes an update on labor negotiations. Shock majority owner Brady Nelson said the two sides have tentatively agreed to a five-year CBA after 12 hours of talks in Chicago on Saturday.
The Shock’s playoff hopes were dealt a major setback when they blew an 11-point lead in the final 40 seconds and lost to
On the labor front, Shock majority owner Brady Nelson said the AFL and AFL players union have tentatively agreed on a new 5-year collective bargaining agreement. Nelson, in
On the field, the Shock recovered an onside kick and Terence Moore scored on a 4-yard run to hike
The play left Shock coach Andy Olson fuming afterward. He believed
“It was the same call they flagged us on earlier (in the second quarter),” Olson said. “The guy even threw the flag and then decided it wasn’t an illegal hit.”
Two Shock penalties helped
“Probably the worst call I’ve ever seen in my life,” Olson said.
Tysson Poots, who torched
“That last minute in arena football is pivotal,” Shock defensive end Mike Alston said. “We had the lead inside the last 30 seconds and the ball bounced their way.”
The lead traded hands five times in the second half before Alston stripped the ball from Grady and Moore scooped the ball up at the Blaze 2-yard line and plunged into the end zone, giving Spokane a 48-38 lead with 3:33 remaining.
“They were amazing,” Olson said. “The amount of film study the DBs and linebackers put in really paid off and our defensive line was all over Grady.”
Grady passed for 366 yards and nine touchdowns. Aaron Lesue finished with three touchdown receptions and ex-Shock receiver Shaun Kauleinamoku had eight catches for 52 yards.
“We have to win out and get help,” Olson said. “It’s going to be a long road, but the only choice you have when you get knocked down is you have to stand up.”