PHOENIX, AZ – Despite the offense struggling in the second half, the Arizona Rattlers tightened up on defense to withstand a season opening win against the Spokane Shock. [Final: Rattlers 60 – Shock 43]
“Offensively, we played well in the first half. We came out kinda flat in the third quarter and they tried to make us win in the Red Zone.” Rattlers head coach Kevin Guy commented on the offense at Talking Stick Resort Arena. “We won’t hit any panic buttons. We gotta get better from Week 1 to Week 2. They threw a couple of coverages that we haven’t seen before. We knew we had to make adjustments as the game went on. We will never under-mind a win.”
Spokane went up 13-0 in the first quarter and was in real position to put Arizona off of their heals. However, the game shifted towards the Rattlers and reigning MVP QB Nick Davila connected with Jared Perry for the first touchdown of the season. Briefly after, WR Markee White recovered the live ball off of the net on the kickoff and put Arizona up by 1 to end the first quarter.
Nick Davila went 21 for 36 with 246 yards, threw 4 touchdowns and was also sacked for a safety. Davila had support from FB Mykel Benson. Benson rushed for 16 yards and three touchdowns which is something the “Latin Laser” loves to have.
” He’s really a weapon in our Red Zone and I’m happy to have him.”
Defensively, the team had 4 stops, 2 fumble recoveries (one by Jeremy Kellem, and the other by Tyre Glasper) and 1 clutch interception by DB Arkeith Brown late in the fourth quarter.
Spokane on the other hand, replaced QB Carson Coffman in the second half due to an apparent knee injury for touchdown-less QB Jarrett Brown. Before he left, Coffman went 11/21 156 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Rattlers will have a chance to fix up some of the issues next week when they play the AFL’s newest expansion team, the Las Vegas Outlaws. The game is set for April 4th, 2015 at 10:00 pm ET.