In front of 11,067 fans inside Talking Stick Resort Arena, the Arizona Rattlers (9-3) beat the Philadelphia Soul (9-3) 80 to 63.
To start the game, Philadelphia received the opening kick off and WR Chris Duvalt returned the ball for a touchdown. Soul Kicker Tommy Prevert made the follow up PAT to make the score 7 to 0. Arizona returned fire with Quarterback Nick Davila (17 of 27 for 201 yards with 7 touchdowns and 2 interceptions) passing the ball to Chase Deadder (5 catches for 74 yards and 4 touchdowns) for his first touchdown of the night. The PAT by Alex Zendejas was missed, and Arizona trailed 6 to 7. Philadelphia then added to their lead by Dan Raudabugh (28 of 43 for 372 yards with 7 touchdowns and 3 interceptios) passing the ball to Darius Reynolds (10 catches for 171 yards and 3 touchdowns) for a touchdown. The following PAT was good, and Philly had a 14 to 6 lead. Philly attempted to catch Arizona off-guard with an onside kick, but the ball was batted out of bounds. Arizona made the quarter a track meet, with Davila finding Deadder for his second score of the event. With the PAT being made, Arizona shortened the lead back down to 1.
On Philly’s next drive, Raudabaugh found Reynolds in stride for a 37 yard touchdown, Reynolds’ second of the night. Arizona ended the quarter with Running Back Mykel Benson rushing for a 1 yard touchdown and Zendejas making the PAT. Arizona was down 21 to 20 against Philadelphia.
Philly drove down the field to start the Second Quarter, and Jeramine Richardson rushed into the end zone for a 1 yard strike. The PAT was good, and Philly extended their lead to 8. Arizona responded with Davila finding Deadder again for Deadder’s third touchdown of the night. The PAT was good and Arizona shrunk Philly’s lead down to 1. On the kick off by Zendejas, the ball bounced off the iron and WR Dan Buckner recovered the kick and leaped into the endzone for a touchdown. The PAT was good, and Arizona had the lead 34 to 28. Philly’s QB Raudabugh threw back to back INTs that went for touchdowns, one was caught by Jeremy Kellem and the other was caught by Arkeith Brown. Zendejas made the first PAT, but missed the second. Phill drained the clock down past one minute and Raudabugh found Ryan McDaniel (5 catches for 38 yards and 1 touchdown) in the endzone to stop Arizona’s run at 28 straight points. The PAT was made for Philly, but the momentum was already in Arizona’s favor. Philly attempted another onside kick, but Arizona’s Maurice Purify returned it 11 yards for a score. Philly’s last attempt for the half was ended in a 4th down stop by Arizona with no time left on the clock. Arizona was in the lead 53 to 35.
The third quarter was very possession heavy and both teams only scored once. Davila found Purify (4 catches for 51 yards and 2 touchdowns) for a 17 yard strike and Raudabugh found Richardson (1 catch for 12 yards and 1 touchdown) for a 12 yard strike. The quarter ended with Arizona driving down the field.
On the first play of the fourth quarter, Davila found Rod Windsor for Windsor’s only touchdown of the game. Philly responded with Raudabugh finding Reynolds for his third touchdown of the night. On Arizona’s next possession, Davila’s pass was intercepted by Dwayne Hollis. On their next drive, Reynolds fumbled the ball and KJ Morton recovered the ball for Arizona. Philly got the possession back by Tracey Belton intercepting Davila. Philly kept up their pressure on Arizona by Raudabugh finding Duvalt for his first touchdown of the quarter, but Philly failed to capitalize on the two point conversion. Philly gave Arizona a short field by attempting an onside kick, and Davila found Purify on the next play to extend their lead.
Philly struck quickly again with Raudabugh finding Duvalt again for a touchdown, and Duvalt also caught the two point conversion pass. Arizona burned the clock down to under a minute, and Davila eventually found Deadder for his fourth touchdown of the night. Philly attempted to use the clock and their timeouts to an advantage, but Raudabugh was picked off by Buckner to end a promising drive. Benson rushed the ball for a loss of a yard and Davila sneaked the ball for a short game. Philly’s Head Coach Clint Dolezel and Arizona’s Head Coach Kevin Guy shook hands in the middle of the 10 yard line to signify a hard played game by both coaches. With Arizona winning, they move one step closer to clinching the number one seed in their conference and this win also gave them the tie breaker if these two teams should make it to the Arena Bowl with the same record.
Offensive Player of the Game: Chase Deadder – Arizona Rattlers
Defensive Player of the Game: Jeremy Kellem – Arizona Rattlers
Playmaker of the Game: Dan Buckner – Arizona Rattlers
Highlight of the Game: Jeremy Kellem’s INT for a Touchdown in the second quarter – Arizona Rattlers
Catch of the Game: Maurice Purify’s Touchdown Catch in the fourth quarter that deflected off 2 Soul defenders hands – Arizona Rattlers