Kennewick, WA - If the Tri-Cities Fever needed to re-start the 2016 season, Friday night seems like the perfect opportunity. The Fever has had nearly three weeks to re-evaluate its roster, make some changes, and shore up some of the little mistakes that have resulted in a 1-3 start.
"We need to look at everything," said first-year coach Ryan Lingenfelder after the Fever's loss to the Cedar Rapids Titans.
The loss to the Titans was the last time the Fever stepped on the field back on March 11. When the Fever kicks off against the winless Colorado Crush on Friday night at the Toyota Center, it will be their first game in 21 days. Kickoff is 7:05 p.m.
The question for the Fever early on has not been a lack of talent. The slow start has been triggered by late-game mistakes that saw the Fever lose two late fourth-quarter leads.
"Hopefully, we can get this turned around," linebacker Brandon Wilson said.
Sometimes recuperate and refocus might just be what the young Fever need. But just because the Crush, formally the Ice, are winless – the only team in the IFL without a win – it does not mean the Fever should take anything for granted.
The two teams have had some epic battles over the years in the regular season and playoffs. Friday could be the next installment.
The Crush has lost two games by less than a touchdown, most recently a 58-55 loss to the five-time defending IFL champion Sioux Falls Storm. The Storm needed a 42-yard field goal as time expired to escape with the victory.
The other close loss was a 56-50 setback to Iowa on opening night when the Barnstormers scored two touchdowns in 1 second to break a tie at 44 to grab a 56-44 lead.
NOTES: The Fever won both meetings between the two teams last season…Tri-Cities ranks eighth in the IFL in scoring offense at 44.5 points per game; Colorado is seventh at 45 points per game…The Fever ranks fourth in scoring defense allowing 46.8 points per game; Colorado is ninth at 56.5 points per game…Despite ranking seventh in scoring offense, the Crush lead the league in total offense at 278 per game; the Fever is eighth at 215.2…The Crush rank last in total defense, allowing 280 yards per game…The Fever ranks first in the IFL in pass defense at 112.8 yards per game…Tri-Cities' Dee Maggitt Jr. ranks eighth in the league in all-purpose yards (83.3 per game)… The Fever activated defensive lineman Brandon Rankin (6-foot-3, 280 pounds) for Friday's game. The team also signed offensive lineman Jairus Spain (6-5, 320) this week.