Gladiators Fall in San Jose, 70-58
Sunday May 24, 2015
After scoring more points in the first half against San Jose than any team had scored in a game against the SaberCats (9-0) all season, the Cleveland Gladiators (5-4) were outscored 28-6 in the second half en route to a 70-58 loss at the hands of the Arena Football League’s lone unbeaten team at SAP Center in San Jose, California. Collin Taylor led the Gladiators with 11 catches for 152 yards and four touchdowns, and also added a rushing touchdown. Shane Austin threw for 326 yards and seven touchdowns in the loss. The Gladiators return home to host Orlando at Quicken Loans Arena on Friday at 7:00 p.m., and the game airs live on 92.3 The Fan.
The Gladiators scored on their second play from scrimmage: a 46-yard touchdown pass from Austin to Amarri Jackson, who ended the game with three touchdowns and 61 yards. Leading 7-0, the Gladiators defense forced SaberCats quarterback Erik Meyer to fumble on the ensuing possession, and the Gladiators cashed in with a seven-yard touchdown pass from Austin to Taylor to take a 14-0 lead just 3:16 into the opening frame. The two teams battled back and forth for the rest of the first half, alternating scores through the end of the second quarter. Each of Taylor’s four receiving touchdowns came in the first half, including his longest reception of the game: a 45-yard touchdown reception on the right side with 5:15 left in the second quarter. Each of Jackson’s three receiving touchdowns were posted in the first half, and an Adrian Trevino 40-yard field goal as the first half expired gave the Gladiators a 52-42 halftime lead.
San Jose opened the second half with a 17-yard touchdown pass from Meyer to Diondre Borel to cut the Gladiators lead to 52-49; the first scoring play in a 28-0 run for the SaberCats that secured them the victory. The Gladiators added a one-yard rushing touchdown from Taylor with four seconds remaining, but were unable to overcome what was an 18-point SaberCats lead when the margin was its largest.
The Gladiators host Orlando Friday at 7:00 p.m. Friday’s game airs live on 92.3 The Fan.
NOTES: The Gladiators and SaberCats met for the first time since May 4, 2013 in San Jose; a game the SaberCats won 56-36… Austin faced San Jose for the first time as a member of the Gladiators… Taylor has had at least one receiving touchdown in six straight games… San Jose led the total yardage battle in the game, 404-331… Jackson had eight kickoff returns for 165 yards in the game, including a long return of 53 yards… Follow the Gladiators on Twitter @CLEGladiators, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/clevelandgladiators, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/clevelandgladiators.