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Cedar Rapids River Kings Edged in Season Opener, 47-44

February 23, 2019 - Indoor Football League (IFL) - Cedar Rapids River Kings News Release

Cedar Rapids, IA - The Cedar Rapids River Kings dropped a hard-fought battle with the Sioux Falls Storm, 47-44 in front of 1,117. The week one contest was Cedar Rapids first game as the newly rebranded River Kings.

The River Kings offense was efficient in the first half, gaining 172 total yards of total offense on just 25 plays. They were led by quarterback Kurt Palandach who went 11-13 for 130 yards and three touchdowns.

Running back Nate Chavious scored the first touchdown of the 2019 season, running in from the one yard line just four minutes into the game.

Through the first half the River Kings defense held the Storm offense to just 87 total yards and forcing three field goal attempts. Travonti Johnson and Jeff Branch each had a tackle for loss and together they had five tackles. The Storm earned most of their yards on special teams with 166 yards on seven kick returns, including a 48 yard touchdown return.

Halftime adjustment limited the offensive scoring, as both teams managed just three points between them in the third quarter. The River Kings' Henry Nell connected on a 35 yard field goal but missed on a blank blank yarder. Sioux Falls' Miles Bergner missed a 45 yarder on his one try of the quarter.

The Storm tied things up with a Bergner field goal early in the fourth quarter, but the River Kings answered right back, first with a 37 yard pass completion from Palandeach to Wade, which set up a three yard touchdown by Nate Chavious, his second of the night.

Sioux Falls tied things up on a 10 yard touchdown run by Brandon Sheperd, and after the Bergner PAT the score was tied at 44. Despite receiving the ball at the 25 yard line, the River Kings were unable to convert a first down and settled for a field goal attempt with just over one minute left by Henry Nell, who was wide left.

The Storm received the ball and drove to the Cedar Rapids' 21 yard line, running the clock down to two seconds left in the game before scoring a 34 yard field goal by Bergner.

Palandach finished the game 16-21 with 180 yards and three touchdowns. The quarterback also led the team in rushing with 35 yards and another touchdown. Chavious added two more rushing touchdowns for the River Kings.

Sioux Falls was led by quarterback Lorenzo Brown, who went 9-19 for 106 years and one touchdown. Darrian Miller and Lorenzo Brown led the team in rushing, gaining 63 and 43 yards respectively. Miller finished with two touchdowns, Brown and Shepard each with one. The River Kings will next be in action next Sunday at the Arizona Rattlers. Sioux Falls has a bye.

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