Phoenix, Ariz. – The Arizona Rattlers (8-1) visit the Green Bay Blizzard (1-7) on Saturday, May 12th in their third and final match-up of the year. The Rattlers have won seven straight games after defeating the Cedar Rapids Titans (1-8) last week and maintain their first-place lead in the IFL standings. Green Bay is coming off their first win of the season after blowing out the Nebraska Danger (4-5) last Saturday.
The Rattlers generated 292 yards of offense and forced three turnovers in a 57-42 road win against the Cedar Rapids Titans. Rattlers QB Jeff Ziemba threw for 124 yards and three touchdowns. Rattlers running back Darrell Monroe rushed for 107 yards and three touchdowns. The Rattlers defense saw big plays from DL Chris McAllister who recovered a fumble for a touchdown and defensive backs Allen Chapman and Keith Trumps who each had an interception.
Both teams traded scores early before the Rattlers scored two straight touchdowns to close out the first half. Arizona would pull away in a dominant third quarter, adding to 26 unanswered points. The Titans were able to pull within eight late in the fourth, but a touchdown pass from Jeff Ziemba to WR Anthony Amos prevented a Cedar Rapids comeback.
Green Bay captured their first win of the season last week in a home win against the Nebraska Danger. Blizzard quarterback Bryan Hicks threw for 200 yards and six touchdowns. Green Bay wide receiver Kezlow Smith caught 98 receiving yards and three touchdowns, while WR Jereme Jones added 75 receiving yards and two touchdowns.
The Blizzard held a one-point advantage entering the second quarter but were able to extended their lead to 28-19 after Hicks found WR Chris Malott for a four-yards touchdown. The Green Bay defense held Nebraska to just one score in the second half as the Blizzard would go on to win 47-25.
The Rattlers rushing offense continues to be the top ranked squad in the IFL. They average 135 rushing yards per game, leading the league by a wide margin. Rattlers running back Darrell Monroe currently leads the league in rushing yards (599) and rushing touchdowns (24). However, they will face a strong Green Bay run defense that only allows 90 rushing yards per game, which ranks second in the league.
This contest will feature two of the best kick returners in the league. Arizona and Green Bay rank first and second respectively in kickoff returns in the IFL. Last time these two teams played, Green Bay DB B.J. Hill returned two kicks for touchdowns and totaled 234 return yards. Hill has also won the IFL Special Teams Player of the Week award twice this season. For the Rattlers, WR Dezmon Epps set an IFL record for most kick return yards in a game (263) two weeks ago.
Arizona is currently 2-1 on the road this season and will look to extend their winning streak to eight games. The Rattlers and Blizzard have already met twice this season, both times at Talking Stick Resort Arena. The Rattlers won the first matchup 37-31 after an interception by Allen Chapman ended a late rally from Green Bay. The Rattlers also won the second matchup 65-33 thanks to a dominant display of offense from Arizona.
The game is scheduled for a 5:05 p.m. kickoff this Saturday at the Resch Center in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin. The game will be streaming on YouTube Live (search keyword "IFL).