JACKSONVILLE – Winning on the road is critical for football teams, teams that struggle on the road struggle to win championships. The (5-0) Jacksonville Sharks do not have that issue so far this season winning three of their five games on the road. A win this Saturday could expand their win streak to six and improve their chances to a number one seed playoff spot as they take on the (3-2) Columbus Lions for the second time this season on Saturday, April 29 at 7 p.m at the Shark Tank for Redneck Night.
As hard as it is to win on the road, it is also very difficult for a team to travel out of the country and return to face a tough opponent in only four days. The Jacksonville Sharks have to face that adversity this week as they returned from Monterrey Mexico, late tuesday night. The overwhelming 60-21 victory came with a cost. The Sharks lost two star players in the Monday Night battle, Quarterback Tommy Grady who went down with a leg injury in the second half and wide receiver Tyron Lewis was sent to the hospital in the first half after he suffered a 5” gash on his arm. Both players are questionable for this Saturday as this quick turn around week means little rest and recovery as the Columbus Lions are one of the toughest teams that Sharks have faced.
The first time the two teams met up was in Week 1 of the season where the Sharks beat the Lions 56-41 in Columbus. It was a tight contest that night and the Lions are looking for revenge on the Sharks home field while taking advantage of the short amount of time the Sharks have to prepare for this contest.
The Sharks are currently coming off of their most recent win in Mexico, defeating Monterrey and becoming the only remaining team in the National Arena League with an undefeated record. Quarterback Tommy Grady suffered a foot injury in the third quarter and was replaced by Damien Fleming who proved to be a strong backup under center, leading the team to score 33 points without their starting quarterback and totaling a 60-21 win. New addition Marquel Wade fit right in with the Sharks successful group of wide receivers, scoring two touchdowns during the game.
Columbus most recently played the High Country Grizzlies at home where they won 57-44, breaking the tie for fourth place in the NAL. Their receivers shined, four of them each scoring at least one touchdown and Michael Reeve had an 100-yard receiving game. Their defense kept the Grizzlies shutout during the fourth quarter.
Columbus and Jacksonville have the two best scoring offenses in the league, so this game will determine who will sit comfortably in the number one spot. Columbus has also scored more touchdowns than any other team in the league with 42.
The Sharks will have to keep doing what they do best - capitalizing on interceptions and maintaining possession of the ball for the majority of the game.
This game will be available on YouTube Live, iHeart Radio (97.3FM) and broadcast locally on CW17. A link for YouTube to the live feed will be available on nationalarenaleague.com and will be provided on Shark’s social media prior to kickoff.
About the Jacksonville Sharks
The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The ArenaBowl XXIV and four-time South Division Champions play all home games at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Sharks Nation Memberships for the 2017 season are now available. Shark Nation Memberships start as low as $99. To become a Shark Nation member or for more information please call (904) 621-0700. Follow the Sharks on facebook at facebook.com/jaxsharks and on Twitter and Instagram @jaxsharks, as well as the Attack Dance Team at facebook.com/sharkattackdance and Chum at facebook.com/chumsharks.