ANAHEIM, CA – Kiss coach Bob Mcmillen remarked after his team’s brutal regular season finale loss against the San Jose SaberCats 60-34, that he may have coached his final game with LA.
“My team played hard, I thought I did the best job I could do,” 2nd year coach McMillen told reporters after the game. “My contract expires in October and they will see if they want me back. I would like a chance to return but it is up to them”.
Not exactly a confident statement from a man who looked worn out and burnt from another tough season for a team that lost it’s last 3 games and ended (4-14). McMillen now (7-29) after 2 years, but GM Joe Windham has said in the past he feels his Coaches are not the problem.
The team played hard. However, it made too many mistakes to capitalize another upset over this tremendous (17-1) Sabercats team.
A late arriving crowd of 9500, saw Erik Meyer play briefly before SaberCats head coach Darren Arbet turned the game over to Nathan Stanley. On the first Drive down by the Goal Line, Odie Armstrong was used as a decoy. One could see the Defense eyes focus on Odie, however, Maurice Purify scored on an Inside Handoff from the 4.
The Kiss answered and did so for a large part of the game. Joe Clancy was given a start for the Final game. He was inconsistent , throwing wide on several occasions. He made enough plays though to match San Jose. His scoring pass to LC Castile for 18 yards closed the gap to 7-6 with Miss on Point After. Kicker Shane Heidari, he would hurt the Kiss with several Missed Points. Cannot beat San Jose that way. Then, more of the mistakes you cannot make. Meyer a short toss to Purify who Kiss Defenders missed 2 tackles enabling Maurice to score 49 yard play. His 2nd of his 6 TDs. Ben Nelson was taking up the slack in the passing game on his SHort Hitches and crosses. San Jose QBS avoided for the most part successfully D Back Rayshaun Kizer who was mainly in charge of slowing down Reggie Gray. This team is so deep. Nelson made up much of the lost production with 6 catches, DJ Stephens 5, Purify and Reggie each with 4 Receptions.
Clancy then had his best quarter in the 2nd, 3 Scoring Passes to Donovan Morgan, 1 a spectacular one by basically the KISS MVP in 2015 with a 1 hand snare. Purify scored 2 More TDS in the Half, one on a similar TD Run by The Goal Line again confusing LA’s Defense. San Jose only led 37-31 at Half. Stanley had come in Midway through the 2nd Period.
The Kiss got the ball to start the 2nd Half. With a chance to take the lead. Hamani Stevens the fullback fumbled at the 1, recovered By Francis Maka. One of 4 Second Half Stops by the Defense, who had 5 for the game.
Then 2 horrible calls against DB Ter ‘Ran Benton for good clean Defense. A Holding and Interference Call. San Jose used the break to go up 2 scores.
Purify’s 6 Yard TD Run used up a drive that took most of the remaining clock in the 3rd Quarter. Then the Kiss a bit demoralized seemingly, Then Maka who has had an incredible year sacked Clancy in the End ZOne for a Safety. Now San Jose took the life out of the game almost. Clancy connected for 38 yards to DJ Stephens for a score to make it 53-31. DOnovan Morgan came back with a TD from Clancy. It was the only score the Kiss would end up with in the 2nd Half and the score was 53-38. Then Kiss Lineman Logan Harrell recovered a fumble by Odie at the Kiss 4. A score with still about 8 minutes to go would have brought back the Kiss within 1 score. But the last chance ended when Clancy threw a terrible pick right to David Hyland who took it down the Left Side and went to the House untouched for a 47 Yard Interception Return completing the scoring.
The Cats quarterbacks combined for 20-34. Clancy despite good protection and throwing for 5 TDS, only completed (16-34). He was just sacked once. Still, this was a recurring theme for all Kiss QBS all season and lack of playmakers. Under 50 percent or barely above it. Numbers you cannot win many games with.