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Lightning eliminated from postseason, Spokane advances on 55-0 run

August 2, 2009 - arenafootball2 (af2) - Stockton Lightning News Release

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Shock began their defense of their National Conference title with a 55-0 run spanning the final three quarters, eliminating the Stockton Lightning from the 2009 ArenaCup Playoffs in a 62-21 Lightning loss at Spokane Arena on Saturday, in the opening round of af2 postseason play.

The Lightning, who had a 21-7 lead in the second quarter and plans for one of the biggest upsets in af2 history, ended their season with a 6-10 regular season record and the goal attained of making the postseason for the first time in franchise history. Spokane advanced to the second round for the third time in four seasons and will face the #4 seed Boise Burn next weekend.

Lightning QB Chad Cavender completed 24-of-49 passes for 318 yards and three touchdowns, enduring a second quarter where he threw four interceptions and had three picked by DB Sergio Gilliam, who took ADT Defensive Player of the Game honors.

Shock counterpart Nick Davila took Russell Athletic Offensive Player of the Game honors with a 17-for-25 performance, throwing for five touchdowns and 250 passing yards.

The Lightning shot out of the gates with a 21-7 run, spilling into the second quarter to quiet the Spokane Arena crowd beginning on Cavender's 26-yard snare to WR Troy McBroom on the game's opening series with 10:35 left.

Following Spokane's answer, a five-yard touchdown pass to Charles Dillon with 5:12 remaining in the quarter, the Lightning pounded 14 straight points on the Spokane defense with a three-yard bullet to Etu Molden with 2:32 to play, followed by a shocking fumble by Spokane's leading receiver, Raul Vijil.

Stockton capitalized on the ensuing possession when Cavender found WR Brandon Horace with a nine-yard bullet to the right corner of the end zone with 10:53 left in the half, putting the Lightning up by 14.

It would be the last time Stockton would find the end zone for the remainder of the game.

Spokane answered with a roaring 28-0 run for the remainder of the quarter, starting with the first play of the following series. Davila threw a 40-yard touchdown bomb to Charles Dillon, who ran the score in the from the right side just 32 seconds later.

Then, the Shock recovered the ball on the ensuing kickoff when Jackson's boot caromed off the crossbar of the rebound net and shot into the hands of Sergio Gilliam. Davila then ran in a one-yard touchdown keeper to tie the game at 21-21 with 7:47 left.

After a Vijil one-yard touchdown scamper and a Lightning turnover, Spokane put the finishing touches of the second quarter momentum swing when Davila floated a 24-yard touchdown lob in the left corner of the end zone to Markee White with 10 seconds remaining, lifting the Shock to a 35-21 lead.

Davila then completed a five-play drive in the third quarter with a 32-yard touchdown bomb to Andy Olson with 11:46 left and followed with another bomb of 30-yards to White with 7:20 left in the quarter, hiking the lead to 48-21.

Dillon converted an eight-yard scamper with 6:37 left in the game and Gilliam put on the finishing touches with a pick in the Spokane end zone on backup Jimmy Collins, running the play a full 52 yards to put the Shock up 62-21.

Lightning receiver Brandon Horace led all receivers with 11 catches and 152 receiving yards while adding a touchdown catch.

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