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Late touchdown dooms Rattlers in season-finale loss to Predators

The game might not have meant much as far as the 2014 Arena Football League playoff picture was concerned, but that didn’t mean the Arizona Rattlers were going to play it safe in their season finale contest with the Orlando Predators Saturday.

Nick Davila threw for 314 yards and six touchdowns, Tysson Poots caught 11 passes for 128 yards and three touchdowns and Arizona erased a 14-point, first-half deficit, yet in the end Kevin Guy’s squad couldn’t quite get over the hump inside the CFE Arena.

Bernard Morris’ 30-yard strike to Larry Brackins proved to be the difference in the non-conference showdown, as the Predators squeaked out a 56-50 victory over the Rattlers in thrilling fashion.

Davila never got the chance to lead Arizona down the field for a potential game-winning drive. That’s because following Brackins’ touchdown reception, the Predators pulled off a game-clinching, onside kick.

The loss was the Rattlers third in their last four games and first to the Predators since 2005.

Arizona will begin its quest for an ArenaBowl three-peat next weekend when it hosts the Portland Thunder in the first round of the playoffs.