Pittsburgh started the second half on a positive note as they scored on the opening drive of the half in just two plays. Power quarterback Jordan Jefferson started off with a big 32-yard run after escaping the Rush defense and took the ball down to the 3-yard line. Power fullback Kirby Griffin would punch in it on the very next play to cut the Rush’s lead to 14-7.
When the Rush took the field on their first second half possession, Carson Coffman was on the field and he made an immediate impact. It turns out he had a dislocated finger on his throwing hand, thus the reason why he didn’t start the game. But after the dismal offensive performance in the first half, Coach McMillen decided to risk it.
Coffman didn’t disappoint as the Rush would score in five plays capped off by a 4-yard J.J. Payne run. This gave the Rush a 21-7 lead. The Rush would force Pittsburgh to turn the ball over on downs and get the ball back at the Pittsburgh 12-yard line. But Carson Coffman would throw three straight incomplete passes forcing the Rush to kick a field goal.
Jose Martinez would convert and the Rush took at 24-7 lead. The Power would get a score in just before the third quarter ended. Jordan Jefferson found his favorite target Mike Washington from nine yards out and the Power cut the Rush’s lead to 10. It was 24-14 after three. Reggie Gray would finally reach the end zone when the Rush started the 4th quarter.
He caught a a 33-yard bomb from Coffman and the Rush took at 31-14 lead at that point. When the Rush went back on defense they would once again stop the Power on 4th down to get the ball back. Rodney Wright would score two plays later for his first touchdown catch of the game. J.J. Payne would follow it up a few possessions later with another 4-yard touchdown run. The Rush would lead 45-14 at the one minute warning.
The Rush defense would do the rest and they would stop the Power offense once again and would walk off the Allstate Arena floor with the 45-14 victory. The Rush defense reached a milestone as 14 points is the second lowest point total allowed in team history. The all-time record is 13 points.
Bob McMillen’s squad limited the Power to just 1-5 on fourth down conversions, forced two turnovers and got a couple sacks in the process. Carson Coffman has fully established himself as the new leader on offense. Hopefully his finger can heal before the next game. The Rush are now 2-2 on the season and find themselves on top of the central division for the first time in a year.
After the game the team was very happy at the post game press conference:
I also got a one-on-one interview with Rush linebacker Kelvin Morris talking about the Rush defense:
The Rush have a very difficult road ahead of them as they are on the road for the next two weeks. The Rush struggled on the road in 2012, but they have already won a road game in 2013. They start their road trip next Saturday in Utah. The Rush lost to the Blaze in last year’s trip to Salt Lake City.
Hopefully they will have better fortunes this time around. For sports anytime you can always follow me on Twitter @GabeSalgado82 #Q101Sports