Phoenix—The LA KISS (3-4) weren’t able to overcome key injuries and lost to the Arizona Rattlers (6-2) in front of a crowd of 14,519 fans at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, AZ on Saturday night.
After replacing Nathan Stanley, who suffered an injury in the second quarter, quarterback Pete Thomas completed 13 of 27 passes for 214 yards and three touchdowns. Brandon Collins had a stellar performance, recording eight catches for 135 yards and three touchdowns. Donovan Morgan added four receptions for 80 yards and two touchdowns and DJ Stephens tallied four receptions for 43 yards.
Arizona Rattlers quarterback Nick Davila threw for 265 yards and five touchdowns, completing 20 of 35 pass attempts. Chase Deadder led the Rattlers receivers with eight receptions for 106 yards and two touchdowns. Joe Matthews had five receptions for 84 yards and three scores, while Rod Windsor added 51 receiving yards on five receptions.
Fredrick Obi led the LA KISS defense with seven solo tackles. Clevan Thomas recorded the LA KISS’ only interception of the game, which was his 80th career interception. He is only the second player in AFL history to reach this milestone. For the Rattlers, Chase Deadder led the team with seven tackles and a 10-yard interception return touchdown. Allen Chapman added three tackles and an interception.
After the LA KISS won the coin toss and deferred to the second half, Joey Cujedo kicked off to the Rattlers. On the first offensive possession of the game, Thomas intercepted a Davila pass in the end zone, giving the LA KISS the possession. Then the LA KISS were within one-yard from scoring but could not find the end zone and turned the ball over on downs. On the ensuing possession, Davila found Mathews for a 22-yard touchdown. Alex Zendejas missed the kick and the score was 6-0 with 5:12 left in the quarter. On the next possession, Morgan caught a 40-yard touchdown from Stanley. The Cujedo point after attempt was good, which gave the LA KISS a one-point lead with 1:03 remaining left in the quarter. At the end of the first, the LA KISS led by a score of 7-6.
On the first possession of the second quarter, the Rattlers, on fourth down, regained the lead when Davila
hit Matthews for a 22-yard touchdown. The Zendejas kick was good and the Rattlers led by a score of 13-7. A Stanley pass, which was intended for Morgan, was intercepted by Chapman and returned 48 yards for a touchdown. Zendejas was successful on the point after and the score was 20-7 with 9:40 left in the half. Two plays later, Stanley found Collins for a 20-yard touchdown. After a successful PAT, the score was 20-14. The Arizona Rattlers turned the ball over on downs, and the LA KISS regained possession with 59 seconds left in the half. On the third play of the drive, Deadder intercepted a Stanley pass and returned it 10-yards for a touchdown. Zendejas found the uprights, which gave the Rattlers a 13-point lead. Stanley suffered an injury and was replaced by Pete Thomas at quarterback. The LA KISS cut the lead to one possession when Thomas hit Morgan for a nine-yard touchdown. Cujedo’s kick was no good and the score was 27-20. As time expired in the half, Matthews caught a 31-yard touchdown pass from Davila to extend the Rattlers’ halftime lead to 34-20.
On the first play of the second half, Thomas connected with Collins for a 47-yard touchdown. Cujedo make the point after and the Rattlers led by a score of 34-27. Deadder scored on a 20-yard pass from Davila, which, after a successful PAT, made the score 41-27 with 10:15 left in the quarter. On the following possession, Thomas hit Collins for a 25-yard touchdown. The kick found the uprights and Rattlers led by seven points. The Rattlers countered, and retook at two-score lead, with an eight-yard Davila-to-Deadder touchdown. The score at the end of the third quarter was 47-34.
After back-to-back fumbles by both the LA KISS and the Rattlers, the LA KISS were unable to convert a red zone possession and turned the ball over on downs. Then the Rattlers kept possession and ran out the clock. The LA KISS suffered their second loss of the season to the Rattlers by a score of 47 to 34.
Next week, the LA KISS will return home to the Honda Center to host the Portland Steel on Saturday, May 28th. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and the game will be available to be streamed live on ESPN3 and WatchESPN.
|5||Brandon Collins||Wide receiver||0||0||0||8||135||3||0||47||0||0|
|1||Donovan Morgan||Wide receiver||0||0||0||4||80||2||0||40||0||0|
|4||DJ Stephens||Wide receiver||0||0||0||4||43||0||15||15||0||0|
|34||Rory Nixon||Running back||0||0||0||2||24||0||0||19||0||0|
|70||Colin Madison||Tight end||0||0||0||1||18||0||0||18||0||0|
|67||Sam Tupua||Tight end||0||0||0||1||17||0||0||17||0||0|
|81||Chase Deadder||Wide receiver||0||0||0||8||106||2||0||21||0||0|
|13||Joe Matthews||Wide receiver||0||0||0||5||84||3||0||31||0||0|
|1||Rod Windsor||Wide receiver||0||0||0||5||81||0||0||21||0||0|
|72||Dionte Savage||Tight end||0||0||0||1||22||0||0||22||0||0|
|9||Mykel Benson||Running back||0||0||0||1||2||0||0||2||0||0|
Under Armour Offensive Player of the Game: Joe Matthews (AZ)
Riddell Defensive Player of the Game: Allen Chapman (AZ)
Lewis Small Player of the Game: Chase Deadder (AZ)
Cutters Catch of the Game: Joe Matthews (AZ) 2Q 31-yard TD Catch
AFL Highlight of the Game: Allen Chapman (AZ) 48 yard INT in 2nd quarter