The Pittsburgh Power improved to 4-3 on the season after its 65-57 victory over American Conference – East Division rival Philadelphia Soul (3-4) in front of a crowd of 5,321 at CONSOL Energy Center tonight. The 65 points scored was the most the Power have scored at CONSOL Energy Center in franchise history.
Power quarterback Tommy Grady threw for eight touchdowns, five to wide receiver Rodney Wright. Grady finished the contest 32-of-45 for 316 yards and was one touchdown shy of trying the franchise record for passing touchdowns. Wright, whose 16 catches are the second most in single-game Power history, had 163 yards receiving. Back-up quarterback and jack linebacker Arvell Nelson led the Pittsburgh’s defense with a team-high eight tackles.
The Power scored on their opening drive when Grady found receiver Hank Edwards for a 5-yard touchdown pass. Julian Rauch converted the point after and at the 11:34 mark of the first quarter, Pittsburgh led 7-0. Philadelphia answered with a score on their first play from scrimmage as Dan Raudabaugh connected with Ryan McDaniel for a 37-yard touchdown pass. Carlo Martinez added the point after to tie the score at 7-7. The Power regained the lead on Wright’s 12-yard touchdown catch from Grady. Rauch made the point after and with 6:13 remaining in the quarter, Pittsburgh was ahead 14-7. The Soul evened the score at 14-14 on a Derrick Ross 1-yard touchdown run, followed by Martinez’s extra point. The first quarter ended with Tyrone Goard fending off several Philadelphia tacklers for a 30-yard touchdown catch from Grady, which was the AFL Highlight of the Game. Rauch’s point after was good making the score 21-14.
On the second play of Philadelphia’s next possession, Raudabaugh was sacked by Jake Killeen causing a fumble that was recovered by Pittsburgh’s Anthony Hoke at the Soul’s 25-yard line. On the next play, Grady found Shaun Kauleinamoku for a touchdown against the end zone wall, which was the Cutters Catch of the Game. Rauch kicked the point after and with 12:42 remaining in the second quarter, the Power doubled-up the Soul by a score of 28-14. The Power defense held Philadelphia to just 2 yards on their ensuing possession, causing a turnover on downs. Pittsburgh took the ball over at the Soul’s 7-yard line. On third and goal, Wright scored his second touchdown of the game from Grady on a 4-yard catch. Rauch made the extra point increasing the Power lead to 35-14. Philadelphia got back on the board with 4:26 remaining until halftime on V’Keon Lacey’s 5-yard touchdown pass. Martinez kicked the extra point to make the score 35-21. The half ended on a 23-yard Rauch field goal, making the score 38-21 heading into halftime.
McDaniel opened up the second half scoring on a 27-yard touchdown catch. Martinez kicked the point after, cutting the Philadelphia deficit to 10 points at 38-28. On the ensuing kickoff, the Soul’s LaRico Stevenson stripped the ball from the Power’s Wright, which was recovered by Philadelphia’s Jerome Williams at the Soul’s 19-yard line. However, Philadelphia could not take advantage as the Pittsburgh defense forced a turnover on downs. Wright redeemed himself three plays later when he scored his third touchdown of the game on a 21-yard pass from Grady. Rauch added the point after, making the score 45-28 with 6:51 remaining in the quarter. Ross answered with his second touchdown of the game on a 4-yard rush. Martinez kicked the extra point to make the score 45-35. Tommy Taggart closed out the 3rd quarter scoring on a 2-yard touchdown run. Rauch’s extra point attempt was wide right. The fourth quarter would begin with the Power leading 51-35.
Philadelphia would score the first points of the fourth quarter on Dan Jones’ 16-yard touchdown reception. Anthony Jones successfully made the 2-point conversion to make the score 51-43. Pittsburgh followed with a 9-play 34-yard possession ending with an acrobatic touchdown catch by Wright on fourth and goal from the 4- yard line. The point after by Rauch was good as the Power extended its lead to 58-43 with 5:12 remaining in the game. Philadelphia’s James Romain returned the ensuing kickoff 58 yards for a touchdown. Martinez kicked the extra point to make the score 58-50. After a touchback on the kickoff, Grady found Wright for his fifth touchdown on a 45-yard catch. Rauch made point after and with 2:48 remaining in the game, the Power went ahead 65-50. Philadelphia would respond quickly, as Ross scored on a 39-yard pass. Martinez would add the extra point making the score 65-57. The Power were able to run out the clock on their final possession to preserve the victory.
The Power hit the road for their next game on Friday, May 9, when they travel to Spokane, WA, to take on the Shock. Kickoff at the Veterans Memorial Arena is at 10:00 pm ET. The game will be broadcast on TribLIVE Radio and televised on ESPN3.

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