Roanoke wins First Game of 2001
By Doug Gibson- Staff Writer
Josh Jones kicked a 22 yard field goal in overtime to lift the Roanoke Steam over the Jacksonville Tomcats 50-47 in Arena Football 2 action on Saturday night. Jones missed a field goal that would have won the game as time expired in the fourth quarter. With the win Roanoke improved to 1-2 with the win. Jacksonville suffered its first loss of the 2001 season dropping to 2-1.
First quarter action saw the Steam and Tomcats trade touchdowns twice for a 14-14 score after 15 minutes of play. Tomcats quarterback Jeff McCrone’s first pass of the night was picked of by Roanoke’s Cory Clark. Three plays later it was Steam quarterback Roy Johnson finding a wide-open Kenan McWhorter in the endzone for a 7-0 Steam lead.
Jacksonville tied the game with 8:05 remaining in the first as McCrone hot Micah Ross on a 15-yard strike. Roanoke regained the lead with 3:47 remaining as Johnson hit Willie Tillman for a 19-yard touchdown. Jacksonville came right back on the last play of the quarter with Fred Lester’s 4-yard touchdown run.
Lester put the Tomcats ahead 21-14 with his second touchdown run of the game at 3:34 of the second this time rumbling three yards. Jacksonville increased its lead with 5:10 remaining in the second as McCrone hit Ross on another 15 yard strike to make it 27-14, after Robert Hunter’s point after was blocked.
Roanoke came right back with 3:43 remaining as Johnson hit McWhorter for 13 yards in the corner of the endzone. Roanoke trailed by 27-21 after Josh Jones point after. Jacksonville would answer with 1:15 remaining in the half as McCrone completed his 3rd touchdown of the half, this time a 10 yard strike to Richard Freeman to put the Tomcats ahead 33-21. Hunter’s dropkick point after failed.
Roanoke cut into the Jacksonville lead with just 16 seconds remaining in the half as Jared Smith reeled in an 11 yard pass from Johnson to make it 33-28. Robert Hunter’s field goal with two seconds remaining in the half missed and the Tomcats held a 33-28 halftime lead.
Roanoke jumped ahead in the third quarter as Loren Johnson stripped a Tomcat receiver and raced 16 yards to put the Steam ahead 34-33. Jacksonville jumped back ahead with 10:18 remaining in the third as Fred Lester scored his third touchdown of the game on a 3 yard run.
With Roanoke ahead 47-39 late in the
fourth Jacksonville sent the game into overtime with some heroics. Jeff
McCrone hit Anthony Bright on a 17-yard touchdown pass with 24 seconds
remaining in the game. A drop kick for two points by Robert Hunter tied
the game at 47-47.
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