Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Daily League News & Notes

Arena Football League
Quiet Riot to Perform at July 6 Soul Game
The 2012 American Conference Champion Philadelphia Soul, presented by Parx Casino, announced legendary rock band QUIET RIOT will perform a 45-minute concert following the Soul game on Saturday, July 6 as the headlining act for Classic Rock Night at the Soul.
"Arena Football and QUIET RIOT are both fast-paced, non-stop action," said band manager and drummer Frankie Banali. "After the Soul bang heads with Chicago on the field, we are going to make sure all Soul fans at the Wells Fargo Center are going to feel the noise. We can't wait to bring down the rafters in Philly!"
QUIET RIOT is a rock & roll phenomenon best known for their hit singles " Metal Health", " Come On Feel The Noise", "Mama Weer All Crazy Now" and "The Wild And The Young." Famously described as the first heavy metal band to top the pop charts, the Los Angeles quartet became an overnight sensation thanks to their monster 1983 smash album "Metal Health" which is now more than 10 times platinum. Their follow up album "Condition Critical" went double platinum and the band continues to record and tour throughout their 30-plus year history.
"We are honored to have QUIET RIOT headlining our Classic Rock night," said Soul VP and COO John Adams. "They have toured the world and performed in front of millions of people, and we are excited to have them perform for our fans."
Blaze Announce Breast Cancer Awareness Night for May 18
With the support of Sports Med Utah and Salt Lake Regional Medical Center, the Utah Blaze will host Breast Cancer Awareness Night when the franchise takes on the Iowa Barnstormers this Saturday, May 18 at EnergySolutions Arena, beginning at 7:00 p.m. MT.
"Breast Cancer Awareness Night is an important event to this organization," said Head Coach Ron James. "It gives us the chance to support and raise awareness for a significant cause. At the same time, we get to do something entertaining for the fans. I thank Sports Med Utah and Salt Lake Regional Medical Center for helping us provide this opportunity."
When Utah faces Iowa this weekend, Blaze players will be sporting pink equipment in effort to raise awareness for Breast Cancer. The game will feature unique pink striped Arena Football League footballs. In addition, the first 300 fans through the doors on Saturday night will receive exclusive pink Utah Blaze wrist bands.
"I always enjoy Breast Cancer Awareness Night," said 2012 AFL Community MVP David Hyland. "As players, we get to support a great cause while providing a unique experience for the crowd. I know the fans always enjoy seeing us wearing the pink gear and using the pink footballs. It's great to be able to raise awareness while playing the game we love."
Tampa Bay Looks To Right The Ship In Pittsburgh
The Tampa Bay Storm (5-3, 2-1) takes on the Pittsburgh Power (2-5, 1-0) Saturday, May 18 at CONSOL Energy Center. Kickoff is set for 7:00 PM ET. This will be the third meeting between these two teams, with the Storm winning the latest matchup, 65-61, July 7, 2012.
The Power enters the game fresh off a victory over Eastern Division rival Philadelphia Soul. The team was led by new quarterback Steven Sheffield who completed 19-of-35 passes for 272 yards, six touchdowns and an interception. Sheffield stepped in for Jordan Jefferson who had a record of 1-5, and was completing 55.1 percent of his passes.
Power receivers PJ Berry and Mike Washington once again lead the receiving corps as the two have combined for 90 receptions, 1,004 yards, and 15 touchdowns. Berry can also get the job done on the net as he leads the team with 34 kick returns for 580 yards and two touchdowns. In three games versus the Storm, Berry has accumulated 546 all-purpose yards and nine touchdowns, including one on the ground and two on kickoff returns.
The Storm enters the game looking to rebound after a 30-point loss at the hands of the San Jose SaberCats. Last week quarterback Adrian McPherson threw an uncharacteristic two interceptions to bring his season total to three. McPherson will look to add to his league leading rushing touchdown total of 23. With one more rushing touchdown, McPherson will break the Storm single-season record for most rushing touchdowns. He is currently tied with Torrance Marshall, who set the mark at 23 in 2008.
Defensively, the Storm backfield ranks third in interceptions with 14. Leading the way is defensive back Chris Smith. Smith leads the team with 36.5 tackles, and six interceptions. His six interceptions have put him in a tie for the league lead with Spokane's Paul Stephens. However, for the defense to fall in place it will have to start with the defensive line. When the team gets pressure on opposing quarterbacks the defense has an easier time forcing turnovers. The team's sack leader is Demarcus "Tank" Tyler, who has four sacks from the nose guard position.
On the defensive side of the ball the Power is lead by Alvin Ray Jackson. Last season, with the VooDoo, Jackson wreaked havoc from the Jack linebacker position. He led the team with 14 interceptions and had 75 tackles on the year. This season Jackson has 34 tackles to go with an interception returned for a touchdown. His backfield teammate Sergio Gilliam is also having a stellar year. He leads the Power in interceptions with three, including one returned for a touchdown. He helped preserve last week's win over the Soul with an interception in the final minute of the game.
Star of "The Voice" to Sing Anthem at Barnstormers Home
The Iowa Barnstormers announced today that rising country star Casey Muessigmann will perform the National Anthem prior to the Barnstormers home game versus the Tampa Bay Storm on Saturday, June 1. Many fans might recognize him for his appearance during season 3 of the hit television series, "The Voice", where he was a member of Blake Shelton's team.
A native of Spencer, Iowa, Casey got his start in church and school choirs, before eventually expanding his horizons to local and state wide talent searches, including the Colegate Country Showdown, and an audition for American Idol in 2008. Deciding to take his music to the next level, he continued to hone his craft as a singer/songwriter, and in 2010 released his first album titled "Together We'll Ride." In 2012, Muessigmann participated in the open audition process for The Voice, Season 3. After battling through the early auditions, he won a slot in the Blind Auditions, and eventually turned the chairs of two judges, ultimately choosing to join Blake Shelton's team. Since his elimination from the show, Muessigmann has used the entire experience as a springboard, continuing his writing and performing at several fairs, festivals, and casinos in the Midwest. In the Summer of 2013, Muessigmann will begin production on his self titled EP, featuring several of his own tracks.
Tickets for the home game on Saturday, June 1 are on sale now by calling the Barnstormers office at 515.633.2255. Tickets can also be purchased at the Wells Fargo Arena box office or online at Kickoff is scheduled for 7:05pm and the first 1,000 adults 18+ will receive a coupon for a FREE large pizza courtesy of Papa John's Pizza. In addition, the first 2,500 fans will receive a FREE pack of NFL football cards Courtesy of Ryan's Cardz in Urbandale. We hope to see you all there!
Week 9 Preview: Sharks Host SaberCats on Saturday
The Jacksonville Sharks (6-2) return to their home turf this weekend, hosting the San Jose SaberCats (5-2) on Saturday, May 18 on Sea Best Field at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Kickoff for Saturday's game is set for 7:00 p.m. ET.
As is often the case when a team from the South Division squares off against one from the West, these two squads do not have much recent history. In fact, Jacksonville has only played one game against the SaberCats in the team's three-and-a-half-year franchise history, dropping an 83-70 decision in San Jose during the 2011 season.
The 2013 Sharks will take the field on Saturday with the goal of snapping a two-game losing streak, as the team fell to the San Antonio Talons by a count of 34-30 last Saturday night. Despite the loss, the Sharks remain atop the South Division, one game ahead of the 5-3 Tampa Bay Storm as the season nears the halfway mark. Jacksonville also currently holds the No. 1 seed in the American Conference.
In what has become a recurring theme, the Sharks turned in a stellar defensive performance their last timeout. Led by a pair of sacks by both Jerry Turner and Matt Marcorelle, the Sharks' front four brought down Talon quarterback Nick Hill a total of five times. The team also forced four turnovers, including interceptions by both Terrance Smith and Tracy Belton.
The Sharks take the field with the top-scoring defense in the league, allowing just 43.5 points per game. The team has held three of its last five opponents under 35 points, and the defensive line leads the league with 25 sacks in eight games. What makes the Jacksonville pass rush so difficult to neutralize is that pressure can come from any spot on the field. While Turner leads the league with seven sacks, Marcorelle, Mac linebacker Aaron Robbins and defensive lineman Rashaad Duncan all rank in the top 10.
This week, the Sharks will look to overpower a SaberCat offensive line that has allowed just nine sacks to this point in the year. Generating consistent pressure will be key in disrupting the rhythm of San Jose quarterback Russ Michna, who has tossed 15 touchdowns against just two interceptions since joining the SaberCats prior to Week 6. The southpaw quarterback has a talented group of receivers at his disposal, including a pair of former Sharks in Jason Willis and Jamarko Simmons. Willis leads the SaberCats in every major receiving category (52 receptions, 574 yards, 13 touchdowns), while the imposing Simmons has caught nine touchdown passes while adding six scores on the ground in goal-line situations.
On the other side, the Jacksonville offense is looking for improved production after scoring just four touchdowns against the Talons last week. Though the Sharks led 20-14 at halftime of that game, Jacksonville only mustered 10 points in the second half. The team was stopped on downs on their second possession of the game and turned the ball over three times, unable to capitalize on the dominant play of the Jacksonville defense.
In fact, the Sharks have topped the 50-point mark just once in the last four weeks after scoring 60 or more in each of the team's first four games of the season. The team's offensive stars have continued to produce, as Jeron Harvey has totaled 12 touchdowns in the last four games, and Jeff Hughley made nine grabs for 105 yards in his return to the team after attending Tampa Bay Buccaneers' mini-camp. But the Sharks must work to finish drives and eliminate mistakes going forward.
Doing so won't be easy on Saturday, as the SaberCats' defense has allowed 38, 36 and 34 points during San Jose's current three-game win streak. The Sharks will have to keep an eye on veteran defensive back Clevan Thomas, who leads the team with five interceptions in his first AFL season since 2008. Thomas has helped mentor a SaberCat secondary that also includes two-way starter Huey Whittaker, who has two interceptions at Jack linebacker to go along with his nine receiving touchdowns.
San Jose's pass rush is potent as well, as the SaberCats rank second to the Sharks with 17 sacks this season. The unit is led by defensive lineman Jason Stewart (five sacks) and reigning All-Arena Second Team Mac linebacker Francis Maka (four sacks).
In a game that has a good chance to feature a down-to-the-wire finish, special teams could play a pivotal role on Saturday. The Sharks' kick coverage unit will need to pay special attention to their assignments, as SaberCat returners Mervin Brookins and Fred Williams have combined to bring back three kickoffs for touchdowns this season.
Saturday is Military Appreciation Night on Sea Best Field, as all active and retired military members and their families are eligible for Buy One, Get One Free tickets with the presentation of a military ID at the arena box office.
VooDoo Head West to Close Out Road Trip
The VooDoo (1-6) are trying to snap a six game losing streak, while the Shock (5-3), who were once 5-0, have lost three straight. New Orleans ranks at the bottom of the South Division, while Spokane sits in third place in the West Division. The teams last met a year ago in Spokane as the Shock edged the VooDoo in overtime 62-68.
Spokane brings to the field one of the league's better offenses. The Shock are in the top five in the AFL in three offensive categories, including scoring offense (2ND), passing offense (3RD), and total offense (4TH). The Shock rolled up 82 points in the loss to Orlando last week and also boast the league's leading passer in Erik Meyer (2,318 yards, 57 touchdowns). Meyer has also taken good care of the ball as he only has two interceptions on the year. Last week Meyer was solid, going 22-31 for 263 yards and seven touchdowns.
VooDoo quarterback Zach Eskridge returned to action last week in place of the injured Kurt Rocco, but he threw three interceptions in the 62-16 loss to Iowa. Quarterback Bill Stull also checked into the game and has made the best of his opportunity to play. Stull leads the team in passer rating (80.4) and completion percentage (56.9) in his three appearances. VooDoo quarterbacks will get their best chance as they will face a Spokane defense that ranks last in the league in pass defense, giving up 330 yards per game.
Spokane relies heavily on wide receiver Adron Tennell, who is third in the league with 870 yards and also leads the league with 72 receptions. Tennell was limited to just 76 yards on seven catches in last week's game, but he managed to score four touchdowns and also leads the league with 26. New Orleans opts to spread the ball around because this corps has battled injuries all season. Courtney Smith leads the pack with 34 receptions for 391 yards and seven touchdowns. He too was held in check last week with just five catches for 49 yards.
The VooDoo will need to take advantage of Spokane's defense, which ranks at the bottom in yards allowed. The Shock are also 10TH in the league in scoring defense, so New Orleans can look to exploit that in their efforts to regain some offensive footing. The VooDoo will have to deal with the league's co-leader in interceptions in Spokane defensive back Paul Stephens, who has six. New Orleans will have to hang on to the ball if they hope to improve their minus-14 turnover margin (14TH AFL). Spokane is fourth in the league at plus-10.
Both teams will be looking for a win to snap their respective losing streaks, so something has to give in this match-up.
The teams square off Friday night at 7:00 p.m. PDT (9:00 p.m. locally) in the Veterans Memorial Arena.
Soul Hosts United Way & Jaws Youth Playbook
On Saturday, July 6 at 7:05 p.m., the Philadelphia Soul presented by Parx Casino, will host an incredible night of awareness and fundraising to benefit local youth at the Soul game against the Chicago Rush at the NovaCare Field at the Wells Fargo Center.
In partnership with United Way of Greater Philadelphia & Southern New Jersey (UWGPSNJ) and Jaws Youth Playbook (JYP), this game will provide an opportunity for more than 5,000 Philadelphia-area at-risk youth to experience a professional football game. The tickets donated by JYP will be distributed by UWGPSNJ to many deserving children in the communities throughout the Philadelphia area.
"United Way is a phenomenal partner of the Jaws Youth Playbook," said Soul and JYP Founder Ron Jaworski. "They do a tremendous job with their education, income and health programs and are an integral part of making our communities stronger. The Soul and JYP are excited to reward children with the United Way support by bringing them out to a Soul game for an experience they will never forget."
In addition to providing tickets for the game, $15 for every ticket sold through will be donated to UWGPSNJ's Impact Fund. Tickets start as low as $28. These funds will help United Way build academic and social supports for youth at risk of dropping out of school, and design programs to help young people stay on track to graduate high school, college and be career-ready.
"We are grateful for our collaboration with Jaws Youth Playbook and the Philadelphia Soul," said Jill Michal, President & CEO, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey. "Partnerships like these allow us to make a much greater impact in the lives of our youth than any of us can achieve alone."
We ask you to join us for a great night filled with family entertainment, winning football, awareness of United Way of Greater Philadelphia & Southern New Jersey and appreciation to the Jaws Youth Playbook for their support. Simply go to and order your tickets. You must order your tickets through this web page in order for the $15 donation per ticket to be counted.

Champions Professional Indoor Football League
Defenders Top Koyotes 48-20
After a demoralizing 73-7 loss on the road to the Wichita Wild last week the Oklahoma Defenders returned home to face the Kansas Koyotes with the hopes that a big win in front of the home crowd would bring back their swagger in a big way.
It was not going to be an easy task. With a fairly short bench and starting quarterback David Bowie sidelined with a hamstring injury, the hill the Defenders would have to climb would be very steep indeed. In response, head coach Derek Rasmussen brought in Carlos Cavanaugh to stand in for Bowie and it paid off in a big way.
While Bowie and the other men who stood under center for the Oklahoma Defenders did their job well Cavanaugh showed the innate ability to find his receivers downfield. Cavanaugh went 5-of-12 passing for 125 yard and three touchdowns on the night, one of which was a 34 yard strike to Jason Stephenson on Oklahoma's first possession that resulted in the Defender's first touchdown of the night.
Cavanaugh would find Stephenson, Cameron Clemons and Packy Jones in the end zone during the game for three touchdowns through the air. Stephenson also contributed a rushing touchdown and Kingjack Washington scored two on the ground. While the Defenders offensive unit provided the scoring punch for Defenders defensive unit provided two moments that resulted in turnovers resulting in points.
The first was on a Koyotes passing play in the 3rd quarter when Kansas quarterback Justin Craig took the snap, dropped back and fired intending to hit one of his receivers running a crossing route. Instead of hitting that receiver, Oklahoma defensive back Marcus Pugh picked it off, and on the ensuing possession Cavanaugh found Jones in the end zone for a 34-yard touchdown strike.
The second was when Ki'Ounta Cathey stripped the ball from Craig ran 25 yards to the house for the final touchdown of the game.
The Defenders held the Koyotes scoreless in the second half altogether and it was arguably the best effort the Defenders showed all season.
It would also be remiss not to mention a stunning 40-yard kick from Brandon Noahr that closed out the first half for the Defenders.
After the game, Defenders head coach Derek Rasmussen had high praise for his team and its new direction.
"It was a great win for us." Rasmussen said, "We've been right there for the most part all season, and this week we finally made the plays in all three phases to make sure we came away with a win. The defense played outstanding and only allowed 20 points, and the offense was efficient, and minimized turnovers early in the game. As a whole, there are still some things we need to get corrected, but I like the direction we are now headed as a team."
The Defenders improve to 3-6 on the season with three games remaining. The Defenders will be back in the Tulsa Convention Center next weekend as the Kansas City Renegades come to town for a 7:05pm contest. The Defenders will be honoring the military that night, wearing special jerseys courtesy of the National Guard and all active military members will receive 40% off admission to the game.
As always the game will be carried live on the Oklahoma Defenders Media Center with Blake Gazaway and Shan Jordan providing the exciting play-by-play action.

Indoor Football League
Revolution Return to Allen for Friday Night Game
Saturday May 25th is the next Revolution home game. The Revs continue their Playoff Race against the Green Bay Blizzard.
This will be a tough game, but having the home support of the Allen Event Center crowd can provide the added advantage Texas needs!
Company Outings: Interested in bringing the office out to a game, treating your coworkers to something nice, or just want to enjoy some football with some friends, the Revolution want to help work with you to get a great package set up!
As always, following the game, autographs will be available for fans on the field! Meet your favorite players immediately following the game!

Legends Football League
LFL Announces New Broadcasters In Europe And Africa
Legends Football League Global officials are announcing yet more international broadcasters as part of the global momentum building around the sport.
The most recent round of international television partners includes sports-centric broadcasters TV2 in Denmark, Sport TV in Portugal and Ma Chaine Sport which covers France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Israel and Sub-Saharan Africa.
“LFL’s progress as a global sports franchise in merely four years is truly unprecedented. We initially set out to become the most recognized women’s sports franchise in the US. Over the next five years we will become one of the most recognized global brands in all of sport. We will surpass the NFL as the leader in American football internationally by 2015,” said Mitchell S. Mortaza, Founder & Chairman, Legends Football League, LLC.
This round of international television partnerships was brokered by Total Sports Asia, LFL Global’s media rights distributor. Each of these broadcasters will air LFL Global league play, to include LFL USA, LFL Canada, and LFL Australia.
LFL Global’s distribution is fast expanding as the league is now covered on television across all continents and over 120 territories including major markets such as Canada, Mexico, Japan, India, France, Denmark, Thailand, Indonesia, Brazil, and others.
With interest around LFL Global building rapidly, projections estimate that the LFL will be seen in more international households than the National Football League (NFL) as early as 2015.

Professional Indoor Football League
Lions To Host Adopt-A-Pet Night
Brought to you by East Alabama Humane Society, on Saturday May 18th the Columbus Lions of the Professional Indoor Football League will host the Alabama Hammers on "Adopt-A-Pet" Night.
Beginning with a special opening gate time of 5:30 PM, Saturday's festivities will begin with a Tailgate Party behind the Columbus Civic Center featuring The Damn Skippy Band. The event will serve as a welcoming home party for the Third Brigade Infantry Division featuring fun for all ages with events including a Dunk Booth, Bounce House, and Football Bean Tosses.
There will also be $1 concessions, $2 draft beer specials, and already confirmed participants for the Dunk Booth include Lions Head Coach Jason Gibson and Owner Duke Liberatore. A ticket to Saturday's game gets in you in the Tailgate Party for free.
This week the Lions are teaming up with The Valley Rescue Mission by taking collections for this summer's upcoming "Camp Joy." Large bins will be placed in front of the Civic Center as fans are urged to donate the following items to underprivileged youngsters: socks, shoes, girl's one-piece swimsuits, t-shirts, towels, pillows, pillow cases, wash clothes, sheets, sleeping bags, toiletries, etc.
In association with Carl Gregory, during halftime of Saturday's game the Lions will be giving away a 2013 Dodge Ram 1500 Quad-Cab in a game of chance to one local active service member. In order to participate, entry forms must be completed at any of the following locations: Carl Gregory North and South, Extreme Outfitters, Little Caesars on Fort Benning, and at the Lions home office. Participants must be present at Saturday's game.
In addition be sure to try your hand at Halftime Lotto Ball Mania sponsored by The Georgia Lottery. One lucky fan will receive $300 in Georgia Lottery tickets and a $100 Georgia Lottery prize package (must be 18 or older to win).
Members of the East Alabama Humane Society and Harris County Humane Society will be on-hand taking donations as well as have some pets in attendance that are up for adoption.
At each and every home the first 150 military members get in free! Reduced ticket prices rates for military and their dependent will apply and kids 12 and under also get in free with the purchase of an adult ticket.

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