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Rattlers rally for win in Philadelphia

Coming off an easy 44-point win over the Iowa Barnstormers last week. Arizona Rattlers head coach Kevin Guy said he wanted his team to experience some adversity in a football game.

They got some.

After Philadelphia’s Dan Raudabaugh hooked up with Tiger Jones on a 32-yard touchdown pass with 8:40 left that put the Soul up 57-42, it looked like that adversity would lead to a Rattlers’ loss.

Instead, the defending champions rallied, scoring 22 points over the last 3:56 to pull out a 64-57 win at Wells Fargo Center.

Arizona quarterback Nick Davila capped a seven-play scoring drive with a four-yard touchdown pass to Rod Windsor, then hit Windsor on the two-point conversion to pull the Rattlers to within seven.

Then, Arizona recovered an onside kick and set up shot at their own seven-yard line. Five plays later, Odie Armstrong plunged into the end zone with his third touchdown of the day. Garrett Lindholm’s extra point tied the game at 57-57.

With just :49 remaining, the Rattlers tried another onsides kick, but Philadelphia recovered. That’s when the Arizona defense stepped up. Marquise Floyd intercepted a Raudabaugh pass intended for former UA star Andrae Thurman, giving the Rattlers the ball at their own five with :36 left.

The Rattlers then generated a big play of their own — a 32-yard hook-up between Davila and Windsor that gave them a first and goal at the Philadelphia three-yard line with just seconds left. Davila would reel off three straight one-yard runs, the third resulting in the go-ahead touchdown with just :12 left.

On the day, Davila completed 28-of-48 passes for 342 yards and five touchdowns, but was intercepted three times. He had been intercepted only four times in Arizona’s first ten games.

With the win, the Rattlers extend their winning streak to seven games and push their record to a league-best 10-1. They’ll travel to San Antonio to face the Talons (4-5) next Saturday.