Spokane Shock receiver Troy Evans Jr.’s feet, hands and mouth were active in Saturday’s 42-24 road win against the Northern Arizona Wranglers.
The 5-foot-9 speedster from Marshall University split time at receiver (three catches, 71 yards), running back (three carries, 12 yards) and kick returner (three returns, 51 yards) to boost a Shock offense that had its best outing of the season.
When Evans, one of the most explosive players in the Indoor Football League, scored a fourth- quarter touchdown to give the Shock a 29-17 lead, he did something reminiscent of a World Wrestling Entertainment scene.
He brazenly talked trash to the Wranglers’ owner.
Wranglers owner Trey Medlock casually leaned against a wall in the back of the end zone as Evans scored on a 2-yard inside run play. When Evans got back on his feet, he immediately pointed in the direction of a man in a suit before he proceeded to pace within 2 feet of Medlock’s face as Evans jawed and gesticulated.
“I have never seen a player go right up to the owner and talk trash,” a Northern Arizona broadcaster said in Saturday’s live stream of the game in Prescott Valley, Arizona.
It appeared to be retaliation.
“(Medlock) was talking (trash) to us when they scored,” a player identified by broadcasters as Evans said on the sideline.
No penalty flag was thrown.
Evans had a team-high 134 all-purpose yards in the win. He has a team-high 10 receptions for 117 yards this season.
“He played a helluva game,” Spokane coach Billy Back said.
Evans and Speedy Noil (11 carries, 90 yards, two touchdowns) – another player who primarily played receiver in college at Texas A&M – filled in nicely for absent starting running back Davonte Sapp-Lynch, who was at his sister’s wedding.
The expansion Wranglers (0-3) have the worst defense in the league, yielding 51 points a game, so a struggling passing game didn’t hinder the Shock (2-1).
Veteran quarterback Charles McCullum completed 9 of 20 passes for 130 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions. He also rushed for a touchdown.
McCullum has completed 36 of 72 passes for 358 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions for a Shock offense averaging 36 points a game.
The Shock defense, which has four interceptions in its past two games, is yielding just 28 points per game.
The Shock are on the road Saturday to face the Sioux Falls Storm (3-1), who are averaging more than 50 points a game in their three-game winning streak.
Shock move up rankings: Spokane moved up one spot to No. 5 in the 12-team Indoor Football League rankings. This week’s opponent, Sioux Falls, is No. 2.
The Frisco Fighters (3-0), who edged the Shock 36-33 in Week 1 at the Spokane Arena, are the IFL’s top-ranked team.
Solomon the snapper: Shock receiver Kamrin Solomon, who has nine receptions for 99 yards and two touchdowns in two games, has extra duties.
The 6-foot, 170-pound receiver lines up at center on field goals as a long snapper.
Run defense shines: The Shock’s defense isn’t giving up much this season, especially on the ground.
Teams have combined to rush for 130 yards on 54 carries, just 2.4 yards per attempt.
Petre points: For the second time this season, Shock kicker Sawyer Petre went 3 for 4 in field-goal attempts on Saturday.
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