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THE RUSH ARE BACK IN THE WIN COLUMN

Posted by on Jul 15, 2012 | 0 comments

Reggie Gray finished the game with 226 all purpose yards.

Reggie Gray put on another performance worthy of an Ironman Of The Game award. And his performance was a big boost for Rush Quarterback Luke Drone who started only his second game of the year. And as a result the Rush walk out of Milwaukee’s Bradley Center with a 57-54 victory over the Mustangs. The Rush pull off the season sweep of the Mustangs and pick up just their 3rd road victory of the season. Their record now stands at 10-7, and even though they won’t make the playoffs this year it’s obvious that this Rush team has not quit and are determined to finish the 2012 season on a positive note.

This Rush team was a little weary walking into today’s game. It was announced earlier this morning that Quarterback Russ Michna was put on injured reserve and as per league rules {Injured reserve means you must sit out the next four games.}, he will miss the remainder of the season. This is the 3rd season in a row that Russ Michna has sustained a season ending injury. The unspecified shoulder injury was sustained during last week’s heartbreaking loss in the home finale against San Antonio. Michna got the injury in the first quarter of that game when he was sacked for the first time {He was sacked a total of 4 times.}.

Michna had practiced in pain all week and the Rush’s medical staff decided to pull the plug. And considering the Rush are no longer in playoff contention, this decision was for the best and for the long term health of Russ Michna. Last season a broken collar bone ended the veteran quarterback’s season, and in 2010 it was a broken ankle that put him on injured reserve. I can’t even begin to imagine what is going through Russ Michna’s mind right now, and I pray for his healing. But regardless the Rush had to move on and they did just that tonight.

Enter Luke Drone, he was assigned to the Rush back in April. He came to the Rush when original backup Quarterback Justin Roper was traded to Orlando along with Defensive Back Kelvin Rodgers in exchange for Linebacker Nekos Brown. Drone was brought in that same week and he has made an impact ever since. Drone has mostly been used in the power running packages for the Rush, but he made his first start in Arizona back in May. He got the nod because Russ Michna had to attend a wedding. And despite the Rush being handed their second worst loss on the 2012 season, Drone still managed to throw for 396 yards and 4 touchdowns.

During the course of the season, Drone would go on to lead all AFL quarterbacks in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. But tonight Luke Drone needed to use his arm, his mind, and his leadership skills to get through tonight’s game. The Rush were a little slow in the first half as Milwaukee would take a 34-21 lead into the locker room at halftime. But in the second half the Rush got the boost they needed when Reggie Gray opened the half with a 54 yard kick return touchdown. It would be his third touchdown return of the year. And from there Rush never looked back.

Luke Drone would throw a career high 7 touchdown passes, Reggie Gray was a major contributor with 6 total touchdowns, and Marquis Hamilton also found the end zone when needed. Combine that with a stellar performance from the Rush defense once again led by newcomer Jorrick Calvin,  and the Rush had all they needed to win. The Mustangs tried to rally late in the game, but the Rush’s dominance of the third quarter sealed their fate. Here is the box score from tonight’s game: http://www.arenafootball.com/game/chicago-rush-milwaukee-mustangs-7-14-2012

Next week the Rush finish the 2012 AFL season with a trip to Cleveland to take on the Gladiators. The Rush are looking to finish the 2012 campaign with 11 victories, just two wins shy of last season’s record.

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