PHOENIX, Ariz. — The Arizona Rattlers (6-0) delivered another thrilling victory Saturday night (April 23), when they upended the Utah Blaze 67-61 in overtime at the US Airways Center in front of a ruckus crowd of 8,717. An interception by LB KEVIN MCCULLUOGH stifled Utah’s first possession in overtime, and on the very next play QB NICK DAVILA found WR ROD WINDSOR for a 37-yard game winning touchdown.
After committing back-to-back turnovers to end the first half and to start the second, it looked bleak for the Rattlers as Utah had taken its first lead of the game and later extended that lead to 12 points.
As has been the case all season when trailing by double digits, Arizona responded with vigor. FB ODIE ARMSTRONG scampered into the end zone from six yards out to cut the Blaze’s lead to 46-41.
Sparked by a DL ANTTAJ HAWTHORNE sack to open the fourth quarter, the defense delivered its first defensive stand of the game. The Rattlers offense quickly took over on downs and Armstrong delivered once again on a seven yard run for a score, 47-46 with 11:50 left in regulation, to put the Rattlers out in front.
On the ensuing kickoff, K FABRIZIO SCACCIA’s kick deflected off of the goal post and DB VIRGILL GRAY hustled down the field to recover the ball in the end zone for his second special teams touchdown of the year, giving the Rattlers a 54 – 46 lead.
The teams alternated scores throughout the fourth quarter, and with one second remaining in regulation Utah QBTommy Grady threw his ninth touchdown pass of the game to Aaron Boone. The duo would connect again on the two-point conversion to knot the game at 61 and force overtime.
Wide receivers TRANDON HARVEY and Windsor were the beneficiaries of Davila’s strong play. Windsor hauled in 15 receptions for 161 yards and three touchdowns, and Harvey caught 12 passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns.
Armstrong had 28 yards on six carries and two touchdowns.
Davila completed a season best 35-of-42 passing attempts for 361 yards and six touchdowns.
Arizona continues its division play next week as they travel to Spokane, Washington to take on the defending Arena Bowl Champion Spokane Shock on April 30 at 7 p.m.