Thunder Stopped Short of First Division Win, 58-48
Saturday May 31, 2014
Head Home to Face Undefeated Arizona June 6
PORTLAND, OR – The Portland Thunder had the ball with a chance to tie the game or go for a win with a two-point conversion, but their upset bid was denied when Shock defensive back Terrance Sanders made a shoestring grab for his second interception of the night.
The game started off poorly for the Thunder, as defensive penalties allowed the Shock to move up the field and the Shock caught a break when a forced fumble on a quarterback keeper rolled into the end zone and offensive lineman Patrick Afif rolled on top of the ball to put Spokane ahead.
The Thunder bounced back, however, scoring the next 14 points in the first quarter by finding wide receiver Eric Rogers everywhere he went – of the five passes completed in the quarter, five went his way.
The Shock regained control in the second quarter, however, as they started using new acquisition Nick Truesdell’s 6’7” frame to make things difficult for the Thunder secondary, as he had two touchdowns in the frame.
The Thunder rallied in the second half, tying the game at 34 and 41 before the Shock took a two-score lead on a fumble by Southwick and a play that seemed to be dead until jack linebacker Terence Moore ran the ball down in the end zone for a touchdown.
After cutting the deficit to seven, the Thunder got new life as Bryce Peila picked off a Brian Zbydniewski pass with two minutes left, but the opportunity was erased by Sanders.
The Thunder did force another fourth down with 19 seconds left in the game, but Shock kicker Taylor Rowan made a 46-yard field goal, his second make in 10 attempts on the season, to put Spokane up 10 and effectively end the contest.
Wide receiver Eric Rogers had another big day in the loss, catching 13 passes for 138 yards and three touchdowns, and each of the Thunder receivers scored a touchdown on the night, but the Thunder lost for the first time when scoring 40-plus points this season.
The road doesn’t get any easier for the Thunder, who return home to take on the undefeated Arizona Rattlers on June 6 at 7 p.m.in another conference battle. That game will be broadcast on TV by CSN Northwest and on radio on 750 AM The Game.
To keep up with everything going on with the Thunder, visit our website at www.portlandthunder.com or keep up with us on Facebook (facebook.com/PDXThunder), Twitter or Instagram (@PDXThunder).
RUSSELL ATHLETIC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME: Brian Zybdniewski, SPK
RIDDELL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME: Terrance Sanders, SPK
J. LEWIS SMALL PLAYMAKER OF THE GAME: Terence Moore, SPK
CUTTERS CATCH OF THE GAME: Nick Truesdell, SPK, TD catch in the corner of the end zone, early 2Q
AFL HIGHLIGHT OF THE GAME: Nick Truesdell, SPK, TD catch in the corner of the end zone, early 2Q
About the Portland Thunder
The Portland Thunder are a professional arena football team of the Arena Football League from Portland, Oregon, USA. They play their home games at the Moda Center. 2014 marks the franchise’s first season. Tickets and Sponsorships are available for the 2014 season. For more information, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 503-773-4235.