SPOKANE -- The Spokane Shock defeated the Milwaukee Iron 60-57 Thursday night and will advance to the ArenaBowl as the National Conference Champions.
The ArenaBowl will be held on Spokane Tribe Field Friday, August 20th , kicking off at 5 PM PST. Tickets for the Championship game will go on sale tomorrow at noon through TicketsWest and can be purchased by calling 1800 325-SEAT.
Spokane jumped out to an early lead, capitalizing on their first possession with a 14-yard touchdown reception by WR Markee White. Milwaukee fired right back when KR Antoine Burns returned the ensuing kickoff 57 yards for the Iron’s first score of the game.
Spokane’s Huey Whittaker scampered into the endzone on a two-yard run to put Spokane back in the lead, 14-7. Burns’ ensuing kickoff return started Milwaukee’s first offensive drive on the eight-yard line. On the Iron’s first play from scrimmage, Spokane’s defensive line overpowered Milwaukee and easily penetrated the pocket. Shock DL Jerry Turner forced a fumble that Milwaukee recovered in the endzone to give Spokane a safety and a 16-7 lead.
Spokane’s defense continued to limit Milwaukee’s high-powered offense by holding them a 25-yard field goal on their next drive. On the offensive side of the ball, Shock QB Kyle Rowley continued to put points up on the board, scoring on every drive for the remainder of the first half.
But, Milwaukee simply would not go away. The Greisen-led offense outscored Spokane 21-7 in the third quarter, including 14-straight points after capitalizing on Spokane’s only turnover of the game.
With just under a minute remaining in the game, Spokane held on to a slim three-point lead. Milwaukee attempted an onside kick that DB Alex Teems recovered and sealed the win for Spokane.
Rowley finished the night completing 76% (28/37) of his passes with 334 yards and seven touchdowns. The Shock receiving corps was led by the Nifty Playmaker of the Game, Whittaker. In addition to his rushing touchdown, Whittaker hauled in a game-high 14 receptions for 165 yards and four (receiving) touchdowns. WR Markee White added two touchdown receptions, while WR Greg Orton was second on the team in receptions with eight for 94 yards.
For Milwaukee, Greisen completed 77% of his passes for 235 yards and five touchdowns. Greisen spread the wealth amongst his receivers, completing at least one pass to six different receivers. Burns led the Iron receivers in receptions (8), while WR Tiger Jones led the team in touchdowns (2).