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Gladiators unable to catch SaberCats

Sunday May 5, 2013

Wide receiver Dominick Goodman hauled in 10 receptions, but his Cleveland Gladiators (1-5) failed to overcome a 20-point halftime deficit, and fell 56-36 on the road to the San Jose SaberCats (4-2) Saturday at HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. Goodman and Jamar Howard each had receiving touchdowns for the Gladiators, while quarterback Brian Zbydniewski ran for his sixth rushing touchdown in six games. Goodman also ran for a touchdown in the loss. The Gladiators have lost back-to-back games, and return home for their next two games.

San Jose led 14-0 after the first quarter thanks to a pair of touchdown passes from quarterback Russ Michna, before Zbydniewski punched the ball into the end zone to put the Gladiators on the board with 13:06 remaining in the second quarter.

Goodman also ran for a one-yard touchdown in the second quarter, but each of Cleveland's second quarter rushing scores was answered by kick returns for touchdowns, as San Jose's Fred Williams managed to take two kickoffs the distance in the second stanza. At the half, the Gladiators trailed 35-15.

The Gladiators scored twice in the first 6:17 of the second quarter to pull to within a 35-29 score after Goodman's acrobatic 17-yard touchdown grab and a favorable special teams bounce. With 9:34 left in the third quarter, Goodman managed to hold on to the ball as he fell over the boards, making sure he preserved the pigskin for a touchdown. On the ensuing kickoff, a wild bounce off the iron was tracked down by Cleveland’s defensive back Lenny Wicks in the end zone for a special teams touchdown.

However, San Jose was able to outscore the Gladiators 21-7 the rest of the way to maintain an advantage in a game they never trailed.

Next up, the Gladiators host the Chicago Rush on Saturday, May 11th, at 7:00 PM.

NOTES: Thyron Lewis had four catches for 49 yards, snapping his string of four consecutive games with at least six catches... After hauling in three touchdowns last week, receiver Jonathan Wilson was held to just two catches and 12 yards against San Jose... LaRoche Jackson led the Gladiators defense with seven tackles... Zbydniewski paced the Gladiators in rushing yards with 13 on four carries... The Gladiators and San Jose do not meet again this season... The Gladiators are now 1-2 on the road so far this season.