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Stampede open with a win

May 3, 2004 - Intense Football League (Intense) - San Angelo Stampede Express News Release

The inaugural season of the Intense Football League kicked off with a bang as the San Angelo Stampede defeated the Corpus Christi Hammerheads 42-35, in the first game of the 2004 IFL season in San Angelo, Texas.

The Stampede were spotted an early, 13-0 lead on 1st quarter touchdown passes from Stampede QB Jason McKinley, one a 11-yard pass to Mitch Ables on the Stampede’s first possession just over a minute into the game, and another to Walter Hayes III for six yards. Matt Russell would connect on the first PAT try, but the second would be blocked.

The Hammerheads would get six of those back late in the quarter on a pass from C. Harrington to Brent Holmes on a 39-yarder that would cut the lead to 13-6 at the end of the period.

San Angelo would score again early in the second period with a one-yard run by Mike Green to spot the Stampede a 20-6 lead before Corpus would respond with a 1-yard run by Melvin Barnett to cut the lead to 20-13 after the point after try failed. Then, the fireworks began as McKinley would unload on the Hammerheads to the tune of “yard” on a magnificent, 46 yard bomb to Hayes that would spot the Stampede up 27-13. But Corpus would answer again with the second touchdown pass from Harrington to Holmes to cut the lead to 27-20 at the half.

That’s when what seemed to be a free ride for the Stampede abruptly ended. After failing to recover an onside kick, the Stampede defense would respond with the first of many outstanding goal line stands to turn the Hammerheads from the lead. But a key mistake led to a safety in the end zone against the Stampede, and suddenly, the momentum began to shift. Corpus would take a 28-27 lead into the 4th quarter on a 7-yard run by Johnny Smith.

But that’s when the Stampede rally began. After Green slammed Harrington in the end zone for a safety, the Hammerheads would relinquish the lead at 29-28. Green would then give the Stampede a huge spot when he ran into the end zone for a 35-28 lead after the two-point conversion failed. But the fireworks weren’t over yet, as Corpus would tie the game with just over a minute remaining in the contest on a bomb by Harrington to Holmes that appeared to be ready to send the game into overtime. But then, McKinley and Green would rally the Stampede with 26 seconds remaining as Green scored on a 20-yard run as the Stampede celebrated the 42-35 win at the San Angelo Coliseum in front of more than 4,000 screaming fans in the first game for the league.

The Stampede would go to 1-0 on the season, with the Hammerheads falling to 0-1. The two teams will meet again on May 15, 2004, in Corpus Christi.

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