Cedar Rapids, Iowa – The five-time World Champion Arizona Rattlers (6-4) were able to keep pace in the Intense Conference with a win over the Cedar Rapids Titans (1-10) by a score of 34-32 at the US Cellular Field in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
The Rattlers were able to overcome a 13-point deficit to come away with the victory.
Arizona’s offense sputtered at times in the first half, but came on strong in the second, scoring 24-straight points. Running back Darrell Monroe had 65 yards on the ground and three touchdowns. Quarterback Cody Sokol also had a touchdown on the ground. He ended the day completing 9 of his 16 attempts for 67 yards. He did throw two interceptions.
Defensively, the Rattlers snagged two interceptions, one from defensive back Arkeith Brown, the other from defensive back Allen Chapman.
Cedar Rapids quarterback Brion Carnes completed 23 of his 36 attempts for 209 yards and four touchdowns and two interceptions.
Cedar Rapids got on the board first when the first pass by Rattlers quarterback Cody Sokol was tipped in the air by Titans defensive end Chris Martin and grabbed by defensive back Antoine Johnson and returned 27 yards for the score.
The Rattlers were able to drive down the field on their second drive, but was stopped however, when Sokol threw his second interception of the night to defensive back Demar Dorsey. The Titans took advantage seven plays later with an eight-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Brion Carnes to wide receiver Conner Hollenback.
Arizona finally got on the board at the end of the first when running back Darrell Monroe rushed the ball eight yards for the score.
After a missed field goal by Cedar Rapids kicker Michael Georgetti, the Rattlers pulled within three with a 20-yard field goal by kicker Sawyer Petre.
The Titans responded with an eight-play, 41-yard touchdown drive that was capped off with a three-yard pass from Carnes to wide receiver Julian Hayes.
The Rattlers closed out the half with a four-yard run by Sokol. Cedar Rapids entered halftime with 20-17 lead.
Arizona took control of the game in the second half. After forcing a turnover on downs, the Rattlers took their first lead of the game with a one-yard touchdown run by Monroe. Then, after another turnover on downs, Petre kicked a 28-yard field goal to extend the Rattlers lead by seven. Finally, after an interception in the end zone by defensive back Allen Chapman, the Rattlers would take a 14-point lead from a two-yard run by Monroe.
Cedar Rapids did keep the game interesting. Midway through the fourth, quarterback Carnes threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to WR Damond Powell. The point-after was missed, and the Titans trailed by eight. Cedar Rapids then forced a three-and-out on the Rattlers. Titans quarterback Carnes completed a three-yard touchdown pass to Powell to pull within two. The two-point conversion attempt, however, was missed, and Arizona came away with a 34-32 victory.
The Rattlers will now head to Spokane, Washington on Friday, May 14th, in a rematch with the Empire (7-2) in what could potentially be for the Intense Conference lead, depending on how Spokane fares tomorrow (Saturday) against the Sioux Falls Storm (8-1). The game will be streamed online on YouTube Live.
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About the Arizona Rattlers
The Arizona Rattlers were founded in 1992, and are proud members of the Indoor Football League (IFL). The Rattlers spent 24 seasons in the Arena Football League (AFL), and in that time made ten appearances in the ArenaBowl, winning in 2014, 2013, 2012, 1997 and 1994. For tickets, call 602-514-TDTD (8383), or visit www.azrattlers.com.
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