Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Arena Football League: Arizona Rattlers defeat Utah Blaze
Arena football » Rattlers quarterback Davila ties AFL passing TD record.
First Published May 19 2012 11:30 pm • Last Updated May 20 2012 12:08 am

In a game of gaudy stats, only one number really stood out for the Utah Blaze: adding one to the loss column.

Again in front of one of the season’s biggest crowds, 10,149 fans, the Blaze (6-4) fell flat. There was little light to take from an 86-70 defeat at the hands of the Arizona Rattlers (7-3), a division opponent.

At a glance

Utah Blaze fall in offensive shootout

» QB Tommy Grady throws for a career-high 428 yards but throws four interceptions.

» WR Aaron Lesue grabs six TDs and gains 160 yards receiving.

» Rattlers QB Nick Davila ties an AFL passing touchdown record with 11 in the game.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

The Blaze were beaten up on defense, shoved around on offense and generally came out of Saturday’s loss at EnergySolutions Arena wondering how a four-game winning streak has suddenly morphed into two straight losses.

"We’ve had two substandard performances, and we are not playing at that level," coach Ron James said. "We didn’t play a lick of defense. … We gave them opportunities, and they took them."

The main culprits for Utah’s struggles were quarterback Nick Davila and receiver Maurice Purify. Davila shredded the secondary for a whopping 372 yards and 11 touchdowns. The big-bodied Purify rumbled his way through the defense for 196 yards receiving and seven touchdowns.

Led by the devastating duo, the Rattlers were on pace to shatter multiple Arena Football League offensive records, scoring 72 points with more than five minutes left in the third quarter. But instead, Arizona mercifully let up and ran the ball for most of the final minutes, simply settling for an embarrassing blowout rather than a record-setting drubbing.

Although Davila missed one final shot at the end zone, he still wound up with a record-tying performance for passing touchdowns — one that Grady had tied two weeks ago. But by the end of the Saturday night defeat, the Blaze’s own big win in that last home game against the Spokane Shock seemed to be a distant past.

"They’re disappointed, a little bit shocked," James said. "But this was the message: From here on out, we’re going to play our smartest players. Those are gonna be the guys on the field."

The Blaze offense contributed its fair share to the misery. Tommy Grady’s pocket was pushed around all day by the Rattlers’ pass rush, and the effects showed. After giving up only two interceptions in the last five weeks, Grady threw four in the game.

The quarterback still threw for a career-high 428 yards and nine touchdowns, and favorite target Aaron Lesue was again a highlight with 160 yards and six touchdowns. But the second-half scores in particular were hollow – the Rattlers were already well out of reach.


story continues below
story continues below

The Utah Blaze’s old habit of slow starts reemerged in the beginning, as the Blaze turned the ball over three times in the first half. In one, Aaron Lesue tackled a defensive back to force a fumble that Tysson Poots recovered, but another interception and a fumble stayed with the Rattlers.

Before they could blink, the Blaze were down 14-0.

Utah finally responded with a touchdown by Aaron Lesue, but Kyle Brotzman missed the kick. From then on, the Blaze couldn’t come closer than seven points. The Rattlers pulled away in a critical third quarter, outscoring Utah 28-14.

kgoon@sltrib.com

Twitter: @kylegoon



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.