DES MOINES - The Iowa Barnstormers (12-1) clinched a first-round bye in the playoffs with a 55-43 victory over the Sioux Falls Storm on Saturday, June 8 at Wells Fargo Arena.
The Barnstormers opened the game with the ball and scored on their first possession. Quarterback Daquan Neal scored a 13 yard touchdown with his legs. A missed extra point put the Barnstormers up 6-0. Iowa's defense came through on their first possession when defensive back Tevin Madison intercepted quarterback Lorenzo Brown Jr.'s pass. The Barnstormers took advantage of the turnover and scored on a deep pass from Neal to receiver Ryan Balentine, 13-0. The Storm got on the board when Brown Jr. threw a 40 yard touchdown pass to receiver Damian Ford. Defensive lineman B.J. Butler blocked the extra point attempt, 13-6.
Iowa's offense continued to roll in the second quarter. Neal found receiver Connor Hollenbeck flying over the middle of the end zone for the score, 20-6. The Storm would answer back when running back Calen Campbell ran for a six yard touchdown, 20-13. Again, Iowa extended their lead. Receiver Jazeric Peterson went over the wall to grab a 26 yard touchdown pass from Neal, 27-13. Sioux Falls was able to score 10 points off a Brown Jr. touchdown run and kicker Parker Douglass's field goal to cut the lead to 27-23 at halftime.
Sioux Falls opened with the ball in the third quarter but was stuffed by Iowa's defense for a turnover on downs. Neal threw a 35 yard touchdown pass to Hollenbeck, 34-23. The Storm would answer back on the following possession. Brown Jr. dove in for a seven yard touchdown run to cut the lead to 34-30. Before the third quarter came to a close, Neal himself would run for a 35 yard touchdown, 41-30.
In the fourth quarter, Brown Jr. scored with his legs again to cut into Iowa's lead, 41-37. Iowa started to run away with it when they scored back to back passing touchdowns. Balentine and Peterson were on the receiving end of both touchdowns, 55-37. Brown Jr. scored another touchdown late in the game but it was too little, too late and Iowa took home a 55-43 victory.
The Barnstormers return home for their final home game of the regular season against the Nebraska Danger on June 15. Fans are encouraged to wear all black to the game to help support the black out. The first 1,000 fans at the game will receive a special black out t-shirt! Kickoff is set for 7:05 p.m. CST at Wells Fargo Arena. For ticket information, call the Iowa Barnstormers front office at 515-633-2255.