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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Phiadelphia Soul vs Arizona Rattlers - Game Day - #MMBSports











PHILADELPHIA (March 13, 2014) – In a re-match of the last two ArenaBowls, the Philadelphia Soul hope to avenge those two defeats with their first-ever victory against the Arizona Rattlers on Saturday, March 15 at the US Airways Center in Phoenix, AZ at 9 p.m. ET.  The game will be seen on The Comcast Network with Lou Tilley and Tom Goodhines calling the action.
The match up will feature two of the AFL’s top head coaches in Philadelphia’s Clint Dolezel and Arizona’s Kevin Guy.  The two early-season ArenaBowl favorites head into the 2014 season having combined for 32 victories last year.
“These are two great organizations going against each other and there is no question that there is a lot of mutual respect on both sides,” Dolezel said.  “This game will be a huge test for us right out of the gate.  We are pleased with the team that we put together this year.  The mix of youth and experience is good and we hope that the chemistry is something that will develop quickly.”
Soul QB Dan Raudabaugh was No. 2 in passing efficiency (122.4) last year, but will have his hands full against a Rattlers’ defense that had 41 interceptions in the regular season (No. 1).  Raudabaugh will look to create big plays with his full arsenal of receivers led by All-Arena performer WR Tiger Jones, who totaled 150 receptions for 2,121 yards and 37 touchdowns in 2013.  2013 Rookie of the Year finalist WR Ryan McDaniel (65 receptions for 819 yards and 21 touchdowns), and former ArenaBowl champion WR Larry Brackins (15 touchdowns in 2013), will also play larger roles in the Soul success this year.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Soul return All-Arena performers DL Bryan Robinson and DB Rayshaun Kizer.  Robinson had a Soul record and career-high 11.0 sacks in 2013, while Kizer led the team in total tackles with 82.0 and nine interceptions.  Veteran LBs Brandon Perkins (32.0 total tackles and 4.5 sacks) and Joe Goosby (68.5 total tackles, 2.0 sacks and 4 interceptions) return to help lead the defensive effort.
Soul FB Derrick Ross continues his assault on the AFL record books and is already the League all-time leading rusher with 1,773 yards. He currently is No. 2 in rushing touchdowns (106), trailing only AFL Hall of Famer Barry Wagner (127).
On the other side, the two-time defending ArenaBowl Champion Rattlers did not skip a beat last season, finishing the regular season 15-3, winning the National Conference West Division title. They won nine games in the National Conference that had five teams win at least ten regular-season games. 
The Rattlers are led by All-Arena Second Team QB Nick Davila.  Davila finished the 2013 regular season ranked in the league’s top five in passing yards (No. 1), passing yards per attempt (No. 1), passing average per game (No. 2), passing efficiency (No. 3) and completion percentage (No. 4).  Davila accomplished all of these accolades despite not having a receiver in ranked in the top ten in receptions.
The 2013 West Division Champions had six wide receivers catch at least 30 passes this season, led by Rod Windsor’s 110 receptions.  Jared Perry’s 15.4 yards per catch was No. 2 in the AFL, while Maurice Purify’s and Windsor’s 14.5 yards per catch were tied for No. 5.
Guy’s defense was No. 2 in scoring, only behind Philadelphia this season (48.1).  They allowed the second fewest rushing yards per game (15.4), but were also No. 13 in passing yards (293.3).  Despite the persistency to give up big passing plays, the defense led the League in creating 58 turnovers last season.  The secondary will be led by Marquis Floyd and Arkeith Brown who ranked in the League’s top ten in interceptions.
The team’s Official “Watch Party” will be held at Chickie’s & Pete’s in South Philadelphia.  Fans are encouraged to arrive at 8:30 p.m. and watch with fellow Soul fans when the game kicks off at 9 p.m. on TCN.


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