by Walter L. Johnson II
August 1, 2005 - arenafootball2 (af2)
The final pieces of the playoff puzzle in arenafootball2 for the 2005 season finally fell into place into this past weekend, as the 12 teams who advanced to this year's postseason field fought for final seeding. So, what are we waiting for? Let's cut to the chase.
AMERICAN CONFERENCE RACE: The Florida Firecats (14-2), already assured of the top seed, as well as home field advantage throughout the American Conference playoffs, held on to edge the Birmingham Steeldogs 28-27 Saturday night. Meanwhile, the Manchester Wolves (12-4) finally clinched the East Division title Friday night, as they defeated the Albany (N.Y.) Conquest 45-30. The win gave Manchester the second seed, as well as the other first round bye in the American Conference bracket.
The Louisville Fire (11-5) will enter postseason play on a five-game winning streak, as it downed the Quad City Steamwheelers 70-56. Although the win gave the Fire the third seed, the team must travel south to Georgia to face the Macon Knights (8-8), who fell to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Pioneers (9-7) on the road, 53-52. Despite being seeded sixth, the Knights will host the Fire because Louisville's arena will not be available Saturday. As for the Pioneers, they will host the Green Bay Blizzard (9-7), which snapped a three-game winning streak with a 78-44 rout at South Georgia. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will get the fourth seed, while Green Bay will be seeded fifth.
NATIONAL CONFERENCE RACE: The Memphis Xplorers (13-3) clinched the top seed, as well as home field advantage throughout the National Conference bracket, as they defeated the Bossier-Shreveport Battle Wings 47-27 Saturday night. The Tulsa Talons clinched the second seed in the National Conference despite losing to the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgz 57-50. The win allowed Oklahoma City to finish ahead of the Rio Grande Valley Dorados for the third seed after both teams finished the regular season at 10-6. Speaking of the Dorados, they earned the nod for the fourth seed, and a first round playoff game by defeating the Bakersfield Blitz, 38-27. Rio Grande Valley will host Quad City (9-7) next week, while Amarillo (8-8) will travel to Oklahoma City in the other National Conference first round playoff contest. The Dusters will enter the playoffs on a four-game losing streak after losing at Arkansas 44-40.
COMING SOON: A brief preview of each first round game. Keep it book marked to OSC for all the details. And don't forget to tune into "Under The Roof" for more in-depth coverage of the af2 playoffs as well.
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- af2 Nation - OSC Original by Walter L. Johnson II
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