Shock get 63-56 road win over Outlaws
Saturday May 23, 2015
Despite 35 fourth-quarter points by Las Vegas, Shock holds on to early lead for win
SPOKANE, Washington (May 23, 2015) – The Shock (3-5, 0-2) went on the road in Week 9 to take on the first-year franchise Las Vegas Outlaws (3-5, 3-1) on Saturday, May 23 at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada for the first of three match-ups between the squads during the 2015 AFL regular season with the Shock coming out on top by a final score of 63-56.
Spokane took early command of the contest, holding the Outlaws to a four-and-out on their opening drive of the game before Shock quarterback Warren Smith would find receiver Anthony Amos on fourth-and-two for a 29-yard touchdown pass to take the 7-0 lead. Shock kicker Taylor Rowan’s ensuing kickoff would hit the scoreboard above the field at the Thomas and Mack Center, by rule placing the ball at the Las Vegas 20-yard line to set up the short field and a 22-yard touchdown pass from quarterback JJ Raterink to receiver Jason Willis. Spokane would score once more before the end of the quarter as Smith would find receiver Nick Truesdell on a four-yard pass and put the Shock ahead at 14-7.
The Shock defense would make their presence known in the second quarter as defensive lineman Micah King would put pressure on Raterink early, causing him to sail a pass over the head of his receiver resulting in an interception by Shock defensive back Ruschard Dodd-Masters. On Spokane’s ensuing possession, Smith would find the end zone on a four-yard bootleg as he would jump over a pair of Outlaw defenders for the score. Following a penalty to open their next drive, Las Vegas quarterback Raterink would get buried into the turf by Micah King causing a fumble in the end zone that would be recovered by jack-linebacker Kevin McCullough for the Spokane touchdown to extend the Shock lead to 28-7. Rookie backup quarterback Sean Brackett would enter the game for Las Vegas on the next series and complete a quick pass while adding three rush attempts as he led the Outlaws down the field to bring the game back within two scores. On the Shock’s final possession of the first half, Spokane would work their way down field and score with nine seconds left on the clock on a four-yard pass from Smith to receiver Rashaad Carter to give Spokane the 35-14 lead.
In second half action, Spokane returned the opening kick and drove the length of the field before fumbling on the Las Vegas three-yard line. The Outlaws would put together their own field-length drive setting up a fourth-and-goal on the Shock one-yard line where the Spokane defense would dig in and hold Las Vegas to a turnover on downs. Shock quarterback Smith would lead the offense down the field and connect with Amos on a six-yard touchdown pass for the first points of the half and push the Spokane lead to 42-14. After Outlaw quarterback Brackett would respond with a 22-yard touchdown pass to Solomon, the ensuing kickoff would hit the scoreboard and set Spokane up with a short field resulting in another Smith touchdown pass, this time to Carter from 11-yards out as the third quarter would close out with Spokane leading 49-21.
The Shock would open the final quarter of play by holding the Las Vegas Outlaws to a four-and-out on their own five yard line. On the next series, Smith would find Samuel Charles for the Cutters Catch of the Game on an amazing catch over the boards from five-yards out to extend the Spokane lead to 56-21. The Outlaws would go on to score three-unanswered touchdowns beginning with a touchdown pass from Brackett to Wilson on the left wall who broke two tackles on his way to a 45-yard score. On the Shock’s next possession, Outlaw defensive back Ray Little intercepted a hitch route and walked into the end zone for a five-yard touchdown before the ensuing kickoff would bounce out from the slack net to the Spokane five-yard line where it would be recovered by Las Vegas and result in an eight-yard touchdown pass from Bracket to Wilson to bring the score to a 56-42 Shock lead. Spokane would end the onslaught of Las Vegas points as Smith would find Amos on a 15-yard touchdown pass, but the Outlaws would not go quietly as defensive back Tanner Varner would take the ensuing kickoff the length of the field for a score. After a failed onside kick attempt by Las Vegas, the Outlaws would dig in and hold Spokane to a 23-yard field goal attempt by Taylor Rowan that would go wide of the posts and give the ball back to Las Vegas on their own two-yard line. Working their way down field, the Outlaws would find the end zone once more on a pass from Bracket to Willis, but would again fail to recover the onside kick and allow Spokane to run out the clock and take home the 63-56 win.
Shock quarterback Warren Smith would earn Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Game honors as he completed 26-of-37 pass attempts for 342 yards and seven passing touchdowns while adding another score on the ground. Rashaad Carter led the Spokane receiving effort as he hauled in nine receptions for 96 yards and two scores. He was complimented by Nick Truesdell who recorded eight receptions for 106 yards and three touchdowns while Anthony Amos added seven receptions for 111 yards and one score.
The Outlaws looked to rookie backup quarterback Sean Brackett in relief of JJ Raterink early in the second quarter as he would go on to complete 13-of-23 pass attempts for 154 yards and four touchdowns in the air while adding another score on the ground. Jason Willis led the Outlaws in receiving with eight receptions for 80 yards and three touchdowns while Jomo Wilson and Clinton Solomon would also record receiving scores. Defensive back Ray Little recorded an interception for Las Vegas that he would return for a five-yard touchdown, while defensive back Tanner Varner recorded a 56-yard kickoff return for a score.
Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Game: SPO QB Warren Smith
Riddell Defensive Player of the Game: LVO DB Eddie Moten
J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Game: SPO WR Anthony Amos
Cutters Catch of the Game: SPO WR Samuel Charles, TD catch over the boards in Q3
AFL Highlight of the Game: LVO WR Clinton Solomon
The Shock will return to Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena in Week 10 of the AFL regular season to host the Arizona Rattlers on Saturday, May 30 with a 7:00 p.m. PT kickoff. Next weekend’s game will nationally televised on ESPN2 while also being available on WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app. Radio coverage will be available on the Shock-VPI Radio Network on AM 700 ESPN Spokane and 700espn.com. Tickets are on sale at all TicketsWest box office locations, by phone at 1-800-325-SEAT, and online at TicketsWest.com.
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ABOUT THE SPOKANE SHOCK
The Spokane Shock is a professional arena football team of the Arena Football League from Spokane, Washington, USA. They play their home games at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena. The Shock played their first four seasons in the former af2, winning division titles in all four seasons and ArenaCups in 2006 and 2009 before joining the AFL and winning ArenaBowl XXIII in their first season. The Shock will kick off their 10th Anniversary Season in 2015. Tickets and Sponsorships are available. For more information visit our website at spokaneshock.com or call 509-242-7462. You can also follow the Shock on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, and YouTube.