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Blaze defeated by Philadelphia Soul, 69-39

Saturday July 13, 2013

 Grady Returns in Blaze Loss

PHILADELPHIA – The Utah Blaze (5-11) suffered a 69-39 road loss to the Philadelphia Soul (11-5) on Friday night. Reigning AFL MVP Tommy Grady took over at quarterback after Jason Boltus was injured during Utah’s opening possession.

Grady finished the night completing 23-of-40 pass attempts for 232 yards with four touchdowns. Wide receiver Mario Urrutia caught six passes for 66 yards and two touchdowns. Chase Deadder posted 10 receptions for 62 yards and one touchdown while adding another score on the ground. Fullback Ben Stallings registered 28 yards and one touchdown on 11 carries.

Philadelphia jumped out to an early 14-0 lead off of short touchdown runs by wide receiver Andrae Thurmon and fullback Derrick Ross. The Blaze responded late in the opening quarter, as Grady drove the team 40 yards to the end zone on seven plays. Chase Deadder capped off the series by taking a handoff and plowing over the goal line from a yard out.

Thurman got his second touchdown of the night for the Soul midway through the second quarter, hauling in an eight-yard score from quarterback Dan Raudabaugh. Utah responded on the next series, as fullback Ben Stallings punched it into the end zone from a yard out to cap a seven-play, 34-yard drive. Philadelphia built a 35-13 lead at halftime following a two-yard touchdown run by Ross and 19-yard scoring grab by Larry Brackins.

Raudabaugh connected with Brackins again on a 12-yard touchdown pass early in the third quarter. Grady capped off the ensuing Blaze possession with a six-yard pass to Deadder, who made a sensation one-handed catch in the end zone for the score. Ross found the end zone again for the Soul three plays later, rushing six yards for a touchdown.

Grady drove the offense 43 yards on five plays a series later, finishing the drive with a four-yard scoring toss to offensive lineman Shannon Tevaga. Mario Urrutia came down with the two-point conversion to cut Philadelphia’s lead at the end of the third, 49-27.

Philadelphia opened the fourth quarter with two unanswered scores, as Raudabaugh found Andrae Thurmon and Jason Jones on touchdown passes. On the next Blaze possession, Mario Urrutia reeled in a pass and spun off a would-be tackler before sprinting 19 yards to the end zone for the score. Following a short touchdown catch by Thurmon, Urrutia would close out the scoring on the night, snatching an eight-yard touchdown out of the air despite double coverage.

The Utah Blaze wrap up the 2013 road schedule next weekend, as the team travels to Des Moines to take on the Iowa Barnstormers on Saturday, July 20th. Kickoff from Wells Fargo Arena is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. MT.

RUSSELL ATHLETIC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME
Philadelphia WR Andrae Thurman

RIDDELL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME
Philadelphia DB Carlos Campbell

J. LEWIS SMALL PLAYMAKER OF THE GAME
Philadelphia QB Dan Raudabaugh

CUTTERS CATCH OF THE GAME
Touchdown reception by Philadelphia WR Larry Brackins (11:05 in 3rd Quarter)

AFL HIGHLIGHT OF THE GAME
Philadelphia DL Bryan Robinson breaks franchise single-season sack record

ABOUT THE BLAZE
The Utah Blaze travel to take on the Iowa Barnstormers in Week 18 on Saturday, July 20. Kickoff from Wells Fargo Arena is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. MT. Follow us on Facebook (facebook.com/utahblaze), Twitter (@UTBLAZE) and Instagram (@UtahBlaze), or head to UTBlaze.com for all the latest news!