Saturday, July 26, 2008

Philly phans have reason to celebrate ??

Besides the Philadelphia Phillies 6 game World Series victory against the Kansas City Royals the city of "brotherly love" haven't done well on the sporting scene. Unless one would like to bring up the powerhouse Philadelphia Stars of the U.S.F.L.

Now we find another "minor league" sport doing well in the town that saw Silence Dogood gain his fame and fortune. Yes the Philadelphia Soul is going to the ArenaBowl against powerhouse San Jose SaberCats. For those that haven't seen an arena football game it is quite fast paced and enjoyable to watch if you like fast paced offenses.

Conference Championship Recap
Courtesy: Arena Football League
Release: 07/14/2008

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WR Jason Geathers and San Jose flexed their muscles in the American Conference Championship
View larger Courtesy: Andy Lopusnak/AFL/

WR Jason Geathers and San Jose flexed their muscles in the American Conference Championship

The Philadelphia Soul will make their first ArenaBowl appearance in franchise history in this, their fifth year in the AFL. Prior to this season, they had made it to two consecutive Divisional Round games, but lost both times, never making it to the National Conference Championship. The Soul’s win over the Cleveland Gladiators earned them the right to face San Jose for the ArenaBowl XXII championship in New Orleans. The SaberCats won the American Conference and a chance to defend their title with a win over the Grand Rapids Rampage. The defending champs will look to become the first team to win back-to-back championships since the Tampa Bay Storm (1995-1996). This will be San Jose’s fourth ArenaBowl appearance in seven years.


PHILADELPHIA, PA – The Philadelphia Soul took another step toward its ultimate goal of the Arena Football League 2008 Championship Saturday, topping the Cleveland Gladiators, 70-35, to earn a berth in Virgin Mobile ArenaBowl XXII, July 27 at New Orleans Arena.

Before a near-capacity afternoon crowd at the Wachovia Center, the Soul jumped out to a 28-7 lead and never looked back with Matt D'Orazio and Larry Brackins combining for three touchdowns. The Soul defense and special teams delighted the crowd with several big plays, including two interceptions by Eddie Moten and a spectacular 57-yard kickoff return by Mike Brown.

D’Orazio led Philadelphia to victory yet again, completing 17 of 25 pass attempts for 184 yards, eight touchdowns and no interceptions. Brackins and fellow WR Brent Holmes each caught three touchdown passes, while Chris Jackson caught two. For Cleveland, QB Raymond Philyaw went 25 of 49 for 303 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. Robert Redd was on the receiving end of 11 of Philyaw’s passes, good for 152 yards and two scores. Otis Amey recorded nine catches for 85 yards and two touchdowns for the Gladiators as well.

The 35-point win was the largest margin of victory for the Soul since a 71-34 win over the Los Angeles Avengers back in Week 4 of the regular season. The Soul never trailed in the game. (For a complete game recap click here.)


SAN JOSE, CA – Defensive back Omarr Smith totaled three interceptions and the San Jose defense had seven stops as the San Jose SaberCats defeated the Grand Rapids Rampage 81-55 in the American Conference Championship Saturday. The win sends San Jose to its second straight ArenaBowl and fourth in franchise history.

Smith’s three interceptions tied a league playoff record and the SaberCats set a franchise playoff record with five interceptions. San Jose DB Clevan Thomas grabbed the first pick of the game during the second quarter and his third this postseason.

SaberCats quarterback Mark Grieb completed 24 of 30 passes for 255 yards and eight touchdowns as San Jose posted the second-highest point total in AFL postseason history. WR Cleannord Saintil caught 11 passes for 113 yards and five touchdowns for San Jose. On the other side, QB James MacPherson completed 30 of 51 passes for 314 yards, four touchdowns and five interceptions. Grand Rapids WR Kenny Higgins caught 12 passes for 142 yards and two touchdowns, while fellow receiver Cole Magner added 10 catches for 103 yards and one score. Chris Martin had 211 kick return yards for the Rampage, including a 57-yard return for a touchdown. (For a complete game recap click here.)

The San Jose SaberCats (13-5) will play the Philadelphia Soul (15-3) in Virgin Mobile ArenaBowl XXII in New Orleans for the Arena Football League championship on Sunday, July 27 on ABC (HD) at 3:00 pm ET.

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