Fire Burn Out
Louisville, Ky- In front of 7,428 Fire fans, Major Jerry Abramson and the newly crowned Miss Louisville Fire, Louisville fell to the visiting Albany Conquest 35-41.
Touchdowns and missed PATs were the story for both squads during the first half. The Conquest posted the first six points of the match as Dan Cole connected with Jared Jones for the score. However, a blocked kick by Demetrius Forney would spoil their extra point attempt. Ricardo Lenhart's 21-yard catch set up Louisville's initial touchdown and put him over the 1,000 reception yard mark, making him the eighth player in Fire history to reach this goal. He finished the contest with eight receptions for 71 yards and a score.
Danny Southwick found PNC MVP of the game Lonnell Dewalt with a 4-yard pass in the front of the end zone for the first Louisville score. Dewalt ended the game with seven catches for 112 and three touchdowns. Danny Kight's missed field goal tied the score at six.
Despite Louisville's defensive pressure Cole completed a 25-yard pass to Antwun Williams for the Conquest's second touchdown. Albany kicker Carlos Ojeda missed the field goal attempt setting the score at 12-6.
Dewalt went up strong to pull down a 41-yard reception opening the door for the Fire's second score as Southwick connected with Lenhart on a 3-yard pass in the back of the end zone. Following Kight's second missed field goal, Matt Forbes pulled down a Conquest intended pass in the end zone giving Louisville a chance to take the lead. Unable to score, Albany regained possession as Cole snuck over the goal line marking the score at 18-12 with 5:45 remaining in the first half. Dewalt took in an 8-yard pass for his second score of the evening. A missed two-point conversion would leave the score tied at 18-18. In the final minute of the second quarter ADT Defensive Player of the game Zachariah Babington-Johnson lead an amazing defensive effort completing two consecutive sacks, however, Albany was able to complete a successful touchdown and two point conversion advancing the score to 18-26 at halftime.
With both teams scoreless in the third quarter, Jerome Jones recovered a fumble giving Louisville the ball with 1:50 remaining. Kight completed a successful 30-yard field goal putting the Fire within five. Behind a completed sack by Jerome Jones, the Fire defense stopped the Conquest offense and regained possession on the 20-yard line. On second down Vernard Abrams intercepted Southwick's pass and Chris Bocage made it into the endzone pushing up the Albany lead to 32-21. A hard hit by Fire DB Dominic Ross put an end to William's two point conversion attempt.
With a minute remaining in the game Lenhart pulled down a 19-yard pass on the one yard line. Forney rushed in for the touchdown marking the score at 27-32. Following a failed on side kick Albany regained possession on the 10-yard line with 57 seconds left in the game.
Unable to score, Louisville received the ball back with 30 seconds left in the contest, Aaron Marshall put a 31-yard pass into Lonnell Dewalt's hands for the touchdown and the two point conversion tying the score 35-35. Albany QB Joe DeLuise, who earned Offensive Player of the Game honors, finished 8-10-0-64 and one touchdown. DeLuise scrambled 12-yards for the final touchdown, solidifying their 41-35 victory.
Louisville heads to Wisconsin for their final road game of the 2008 season as they face Midwest conference foe Green Bay Blizzard. The contest kicks off Friday, July 18 at 8:30 P.M. Visit www.louisvillefirefootball.com to view next week's game online.
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