This week the Pirates (2-1) welcome back quarterback Sean Brackett as they travel to Allentown, PA to face the Lehigh Valley Steel Hawks. Brackett missed last week’s game on the road at Carolina as he was working out for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League.
Quarterbacks Danny Southwick and Robert Kent Jr. both saw playing time in the 55-47 loss to the Cobras. Southwick finished 5 of 13 for 46 yards, no touchdowns and an interception while Kent Jr. threw for four scores connecting on 18 of 27 for 219 yards.
According to head coach Ameer Ismail the offense was out of sync. Still, the Pirates had a chance to win the game on their final drive but a fumbled lateral pass led to the team’s first loss of the season.
“Our timing was off with our new quarterbacks and we made a few errors offensively and defensively.
At the end of the day we were in a position to win but you can’t turn the ball over in critical situations.” he said.
The Pirates hope the inspired play of wide receivers Lavon Pearson and Lamont Bryant continues. Both enjoyed career games as Bryant pulled in nine receptions for 93 yards last week and Pearson had eight catches for 103 yards and two touchdowns.
This week Ismail wants his offense to be sharp from the opening kick.
“We have to find a better rhythm and be more discipline all around. We have to hit our landmarks and improve our timing. We have to move our feet on the offensive line. Our receivers and our quarterback must be on the same page. We also have to execute on the goal line and take care of the football.”
Last week the defense did get one turnover on an interception by Troy Sanders, but that was the fewest in a game so far this season.
“I want us to play much more physical,” Ismail said. “I want to see our defensive backs play more physical and be more active flying around to the ball. Our communication has to be better between our secondary and our defensive front. If we eliminate errors and create more turnovers and we’ll be in good shape.”
In roster moves this week the Pirates traded defensive lineman Mike Wyche, 6’4” 350 to Carolina. The Cobras sent fullback Undra Hendrix to Massachusetts. Hendrix is 5’11” 280, played his college ball at Hardin-Simmons. Hendrix is known as “The Wrecking Ball” and has five years of arena football experience, most recently with the Lehigh Valley Steel Hawks. Other career stops included High Country, Laredo, Amarillo, Jacksonville, Las Vegas, Tampa Bay and in Texas with the Revolution.
Massachusetts also placed Linebacker Shawn Loiseau, and fullback Dashawn Johnson on injured reserve last week. Wide Receiver Mardy Gilyard will also be activated for this upcoming contest this weekend. The team has released quarterback Danny Southwick.
The Massachusetts Pirates are members of the National Arena League (NAL).
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