West Valley City, Utah – The five-time World Champion Arizona Rattlers (4-3) stay perfect in conference play with a win over the Salt Lake Screaming Eagles (1-6) by a score of 73-60 at the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah. The win keeps the Rattlers within striking distance of the Conference lead.
The Rattlers racked up eight rushing touchdowns in their win Saturday night, a feat that has not been seen before in Arizona. RB Darrell Monroe led the way, with five touchdowns; a new team record. He also had 80 yards on 14 attempts (5.7 yards per rush). Right behind him was WR Jamal Miles with 22 yards and 3 touchdowns. Miles also returned the initial kickoff for a 56-yard touchdown. QB Cody Sokol also had a productive night, completed six of his ten passes for 102 yards and a touchdown. He did have one interception.
The Rattlers secondary had a big night as well. Both DB Allen Chapman and Arkeith Brown each had an interception, and DB Nathan Lindsey picked off two two-point conversions.
Salt Lake QB Verlon Reed accounted for most of the Screaming Eagles offense, obtained eight total touchdowns. He completed 20 of his 32 attempts for 162 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. He also rushed 11 times for 107 yards (9.7 yards per rush) and four rushing touchdowns.
Arizona got off to a quick start as WR Jamal Miles returned the kickoff 56 yards for the score. After forcing the Screaming Eagles to a three-and-out, the Rattlers would take the ball down the field and with a 2-yard rush by RB Darrell Monroe, the Rattlers took a 13-0 lead.
The Screaming Eagles however, would respond. QB Verlon Reed took the ball 34 yards on second down for the score. On the Rattlers next possession, Sokol would be sacked by DE Jerrod Black and fumble the ball, which would be recovered by DE Benjamin Compton, who returned it ten yards for the score. The PAT, was missed by K Trent Andrus and the score was 13-all.
The Rattlers closed out the quarter with a touchdown by WR Jamal Miles. Arizona led 20-13 after one.
Salt Lake found some momentum in the second quarter. Five seconds into the quarter, WR Cy Strahm hauled in a 9-yard pass from QB Verlon Reed. Rattlers QB Sokol, on the next drive, threw an interception on 3rd down, and the Screaming Eagles would take advantage with a field goal by Andrus to take the lead.
The two teams would take turns scoring through much of the rest of the half. Arizona scored on a 9-yard run by Monroe. Salt Lake responded with a 17-yard pass from Reed to Strahm.
It looked like the Rattlers would close out the half with a 1-point lead after a 21-yard field goal by K Sawyer Petre with 23 seconds left. However, Screaming Eagles QB Reed threw an interception on the goal line to DB Allen Chapman. With four seconds left, WR Fred Williams took a short pass from Sokol and took it 42 yards for the score. The half ended with the Rattlers leading 38-29.
The second half began with an interception thrown by Salt Lake's QB Reed to DB Arkeith Brown. The Rattlers would score two plays later on a 2-yard run by Monroe.
The rest of the third quarter was a seesaw battle. Screaming Eagles would score on a 25-yard run by Reed. The two-point conversion failed. The Rattlers responded with a 20-yard run by Monroe. Salt Lake would close out the half with a three-yard pass from Reed to WR Devin Mahina. The two-point conversion attempt by Reed was picked off by DB Nathan Lindsey. The Rattlers took a commanding 52-41 lead into the fourth.
The two teams would alternate scoring throughout the rest of the night. For the Rattlers, Monroe would rush the ball in twice, a 6-yard run and a 15-yard run, and Miles would score with a 1-yard run. For the Screaming Eagles, Reed would take the ball himself in twice, an eight-yard run and a 1-yard run, and would throw a six-yard touchdown pass to WR Juwan Dotson. The final score, Rattlers 73; Screaming Eagles 60.
The Rattlers return home this Saturday, April 22nd, to take on the conference leading Spokane Empire (4-2). The winner of Saturdays game will be in first place in the Intense Conference. The game can be seen on FOX Sports Arizona Plus, on the FOX Sports Go app, or on YouTube Live. The game will also be simulcast on 1580 AM the Fanatic 99.3 and 99.5 FM.