Jacksonville earn second consecutive win and advance to 3-3
JACKSONVILLE- The Jacksonville Sharks (3-3) beat the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks (0-5) 44-17 in a one-sided game. This victory helps Jacksonville advance to 3-3 (.500) on the season.
Sharks Quarterback Adrian McPherson proved that he could move the ball down the field against a struggling Steelhawks defense. McPherson totaled 98 yards for two touchdowns and one interception. Fullback Derrick Ross had a solid game, rushing 11 times for 45 yards two touchdowns, and one fumble. Wide Receiver Kendal Thompkins made his first home start a great game, as he made one receptions for 40 yards and one touchdown on the night. For the defense, Defensive Lineman Jermiah Price had an outstanding six tackles and five sacks, earning him Defensive Player of the Game. Defensive Lineman Damien Jacobs had three tackles and forced one safety. Silverberry Mouhon made four tackles, recovered one fumble and returned it for a 34 yard touchdown, and recorded two sacks. Linebacker Charlie Hunt came up with two interceptions, returned for 58 yards, and one of which was a touchdown.
Opening the game, Steelhawks Kicker Spencer Hotaling made a deuce to give the Steelhawks an early 2-0 lead. Quarterback Adrian McPherson got things going on the first drive, as he tossed the ball down the field to a wide open Kendal Thompkins on a 40 touchdown pass to put the Sharks up 6-2. On the Steelhawks opening drive, Spencer Hotaling went to kick a field goal, but the Sharks special teams defense had other plans, taking advantage of a bad snap and tackling the holder for a huge loss of yardage. Derrick Ross would get his first rushing touchdown of the night from four yards out to put the Sharks up 13-2 with just under three minutes to go in the first quarter. The Sharks defense proved to be a powerhouse defense tonight, forcing Steelhawks Quarterback Bryan Morris to fumble. The fumble recovered by Defensive Lineman Silverberry Mouhon was returned for a touchdown, followed by a successful Deuce attempt by Kicker Brandon Behr to keep the Sharks up 22-2 at the end of the first quarter. To start the second quarter, Morris threw an interception right to Sharks Linebacker Charlie Hunt and returned it for a touchdown. To end the first half, Silverberry Mouhon and Damien Jacobs dominated the Steelhawks offensive line by getting to the quarterback for two consecutive sacks for a loss of 12 total yards.
To start out the third quarter, Steelhawks Wide Receiver rushed for a four yard touchdown, closing the Steelhawks gap to a 9-31 score. McPherson found a wide open Chris Gilchrist in the end zone for a 20 yard touchdown. At this point, the score is 37-9, so the Sharks slowed down the tempo from here. To end the third quarter, the score was 37-9 with the Sharks on top. In the fourth quarter, Jacksonville was sure to take their time to score, as Derrick Ross rushed for a five yard touchdown, extending the Sharks lead 44-9 with 9:00 to play in regulation. From there, Quarterback Ryan Walker came into the game. Walker finished the game 0-for-6 for three interceptions. The Steelhawks took advantage of one of those touchdowns and the Sharks closed the game 44-17.
Players of the Game:
Offensive Player of the Game: Chris Gilchrist - Three receptions for 41 yards and one touchdown
Defensive Player of the Game: DB Jermiah Price - Six tackles, Five sacks
Special Teams Player of the Game: Spencer Hotaling - 1-of-2 PAT; 2 Deuces
The next Sharks game is in Jacksonville as they take on the Maine Mammoths (1-3) at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena for Military Appreciation Night at 7:00 pm (ET).
About the Jacksonville Sharks
The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The 2017 NAL Champions and ArenaBowl XXIV Champions and play all home games at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Sharks Nation Memberships for the 2018 season are now available. Shark Nation Memberships start as low as $75. 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.