Blast Contains Outlaws
Memphis,Tenn- Defensive End Fred Walton forced a fumble and Julius Black recovered the ball on the Outlaws 37 yard line, 4 plays later Quarterback Timothy Graham ran in for a 6 yard touchdown in the first quarter, Timothy Graham threw for 201 yards and a 2 TD's to receivers Julius Black and Jarmarkus King, and Memphis raced to an early lead then held on for a 26-12 win over Tri-City Outlaws on Saturday night.
The Blast revamped, defense under new defensive coordinator Carlos Alexander more than held their own against the Outlaws and took the first step in erasing the embarrassing loss of last weeks 15-8 loss to the Huntsville Rockets.
Memphis forced three turnovers, sacked Outlaws Dexter Edwards four times.
Edwards threw a 25-yard touchdown to uncovered Jahnal Browne towards the end of the second quarter and Joshua Sudler added a 5-yard TD run in the fourth quarter but that was it for the Outlaws, who weren't helped by a questionable 4th down decision.
Edwards finished 10 of 19 for 70 yards in his first start after after the Outlaws starting Quarterback Dominique White was injured in their win against the St.Louis Bulldogs on May 13th. The Outlaws went for the 2-point conversion following Browne touchdown on the ensuing play of the second quarter and failed. They were forced to go for two again following Sudler's score on fourth down with 3:06 left and trailing 26-12, but Edwards pass was broken up by Blast cornerback Jamison Knox and the Outlaws still trailed by two scores.
Outlaws followed Sudler touchdown with another drive inside the Blast 35 but he was intercepted by LB Alonzo Lomax which ended their drive. Edwards pass was overthrown with 8:50 left 4th quarter and the Blast took over on their own 37 yard line.
Blast allowed 120 total yards, well under the 208 yards per game average allowed. Coach Alexander, stated "We were opportunistic". With defensive end Fred Walton forcing a fumble on the Outlaws' first possession of the game and giving the Blast a short field for their first score of the game when Timothy Graham plowed in from the 6.
It was 14-0 after the Blast next drive Graham hit three of his 14 pass attempts in a row, the last pass was an inside release route to King, who made a a diving catch and was not down by contact,he jump up made a quick sidestep that left Outlaws' defensive back grasping at air and sprinted 85 yards for the two touchdown advantage.
Graham finished 10 of 14 passes and completed 7 straight at one point in the first half. Receiver Jamarkus King had one catch for 85 yards.
The only mistakes Memphis made in the opening half was due to a coverage lapse by the Blast on the play at the end of second quarter. That's when Tri-City Outlaws lined up Browne on the field near their sideline and uncovered. Edwards made an easy toss and Browne went untouched for the touchdown.
But it was the Blast defense ended up making the biggest play of the night. Jahnal Browne attempted to catch 8-yard pass in the flat it was 4th and 6 but as he was hit the ball bounced in the air as he was being pulled down by Jamison Knox who loosened it just enough that when Markquie Reed drilled Browne, the ball came completely free. Turnover on downs which ended the Outlaws last opportunity to make a comeback.