Storm Open up season with strong win over Cleveland
Tampa Bay Storm Press Release
Cleveland, OH – The Tampa Bay Storm (1-0) defeated the Cleveland Gladiators (0-1) by a score of 46-40 in front of 12,865 fans at Quicken Loans Arena. The night saw the return of several players including Randy Hippeard, Joe Hills and Dexter Jackson. It also marked the first win for Ron James as head coach of the Storm.
The Storm were led by quarterback Randy Hippeard, who completed 22-of-31 passes for 205 yards and six touchdowns. His top target of the night was Storm newcomer LaMark Brown, who finished the night with 121 yards and two touchdowns on nine catches.
Storm receiver Joe Hills finished the night with seven receptions for 53 yards and three touchdowns. He now has a receiving touchdown in 69 consecutive regular season games.
The Storm defense set the tone early, putting a tremendous amount of pressure on the Cleveland offense and shutting the team out in the first quarter. Storm defensive lineman Caesar Rayford made his presence known, picking off a pass by Shane Boyd and returning it four yards for the score. Mac linebacker Dexter Jackson also had his way with the Gladiators offensive line, recording 2.0 sacks on the night. The team had a total of 4.0 sacks. Last season, the team had eight through 16 games.
The Gladiators were led by quarterback Shane Boyd. He finished the night completing 24-37 passes for 288 yards and five touchdowns.
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Total
Tampa Bay Storm 7 12 7 20 46
Cleveland Gladiators 0 7 7 20 40
TAM – Caesar Rayford 4-yard interception return. (Mark Lewis, Good)
CLE – Collin Taylor 29-yard reception. (Drew Basil, Good)
TAM – Joe Hills 2-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, No Good)
CLE – Collin Taylor 10-yard reception. (Drew Basil, Good)
TAM – Joe Hills 10-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, No Good)
CLE – Brandon Thompkins 24-yard reception. (Drew Basil, Good)
TAM – LaMark Brown 13-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, Good)
TAM – Kendrick Ings 6-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, No Good)
CLE – Larry Brackins 2-yard reception. (Drew Basil, Good)
TAM – Joe Hills 7-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, Good)
CLE – Larry Brackins 8-yard reception. (2-pt. Conversion Failed)
TAM – LaMark Brown 6-yard reception. (Mark Lewis, Good)
CLE – Larry Brackins 2-yard reception. (2-pt. Conversion Failed).
TAM – Randy Hippeard (22-31-1-205-6)
CLE – Shane Boyd (24-37-1-288-5)
TAM – LaMark Brown (3-18-0), Randy Hippeard (2-15-0), John Brown (2-4-0)
CLE – Shane Boyd (3-(-6)-0), Brandon Thompkins (1-4-0), Antonio Vaughn (1-3-0), Larry Brackins (1-2-0)
TAM – LaMark Brown (9-121-2), Joe Hills (7-53-3), Justin Hilton (4-21-0), Kendrick Ings (2-10-1)
CLE – Brandon Thompkins (8-98-1), Collin Taylor (6-91-2), Larry Brackins (8-87-2), Antonio Vaughn (1-7-0), Willie McGinnis (1-5-0)
KO Returns: (No.-Yds-TD)
TAM – Kendrick Ings (3-49-0)
CLE – Brandon Thompkins (7-145-0)
MVP of the Game: Randy Hippeard, TAM
Offensive Player of the Game: Joe Hills, TAM
Defensive Player of the Game: Caesar Rayford, TAM