By: Preston Kreisler
The Orlando Predators (8-4) fell to the Jacksonville Sharks (11-1) 68-67 in front of 12,356 at the new Amway Center Saturday night. After playing from behind the entire night, the Predators found themselves in position to win after quarterback Nick Hill hit T.T. Toliver for a 33-yard touchdown.
But the Preds could not convert on the two-point conversion with just seven seconds remaining. Jacksonville held momentum for the majority of the game, leading 61-47 early in the fourth quarter. But once Hill hit Josh Bush for a 22-yard touchdown to close the gap, Travis Coleman intercepted an Aaron Garcia pass off the net on fourth down to help put Orlando in position to knot the score with less than five minutes to play. Orlando turned the interception into a one-yard touchdown run by James Lynch, which tied the game at 61-all with 52 seconds to play.
The Sharks recovered the onside kick and reclaimed the lead at 68-61 when Jamark Simmons rushed in for the score from one-yard out with 23 seconds left. Hill went 25 for 42 for 361 yards passing and 9 touchdowns. Toliver finished with nine catches for 134 yards and three touchdowns while Bobby Sippio caught seven passes for 103 yards and four touchdowns. Jacksonville’s Jeron Harvey led all receivers with 10 receptions for 145 yards and four scores.
The Sharks started the game with a strong defensive stand, forcing the Predators to go four-and-out on their first possession. They then capitalized with a 20-yard touchdown pass from Garcia to Jomo Wilson to take the early lead on their first play from scrimmage. Jacksonville led the entire first half until Orlando tied the game at 33-all with 38 seconds to go in the second quarter. Each team missed two extra-point attempts. Garcia finished 24 of 38 passing for 329 yards and eight touchdowns for Jacksonville.
- National Guard MVP – Aaron Garcia (JAX)
- Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the game – Aaron Garcia (JAX)
- JSL Ironman of the Game – Josh Bush (ORL)
- Riddell Defensive player of the game – Micheaux Robinson (JAX)
- Cutters Catch of the Game – Bobby Sippio (ORL)
- Nifty Playmaker of the Game – Jeron Harvey (JAX)
- Spalding Highlight of the Game – T.T. Toliver TD reception from Nick Hill with seven seconds left (ORL)