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Tuesday, 09 May 2017 14:24

LFL Week 4: Steam open season with road win against Rebellion, 56-21

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Steam open season with 50-21 road win against Rebellion in LFL Week 4 action.

The Atlanta Steam (1-0) traveled to Pittsburgh to open their 2017 season against the Rebellion (0-2) in Week 4 LFL action, and returned home with a 56-21 victory in what was the first home game for the first-year Pittsburgh franchise.

There were a number of bright spots for Atlanta in the 35-point win, but there are some things that need to be addressed on the defensive side of the ball before the Steam travel to Chicago for what is sure to be one of the most competitive games in the league this season.

Bright spots for Atlanta included racking up 181 yards rushing on 23 attempts (7.9 average per rush), going +3 in the turn over battle, converting on 75% (4 of 6) of third-down plays, and fielding a more physical ground attack than Atlanta has seen in prior years, evidenced by a ground attack that accounted for more than 80% of the 234 total yards the Steam tallied.

Things to work on on the defensive side of the ball include surrendering 21-points to an offense that managed just 9 against Omaha in their opener, allowing 12 first downs while losing the time of possession battle big, and giving up 100 yards and a pair of touchdowns through the air.

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Hughes (pictured in her rookie season) ran for a 33 yard TD to open the scoring in the Atlanta win.

Individual stat leaders for the Atlanta offense were Jessie Locklear (72 yards rushing, 1 TD, 6.0 Avg.), Dakota Hughes (4-9 passing with 53 yards, 2 TDs), and Lauran Ziegler (2 receptions for 36, 1 TD). Ziegler also was the All-Purpose Yards leader with 74 (25 Rushing, 36 Receiving, 13 IR).

Hughes started the scoring with a 33 yard run just 99 seconds into the contest and had a scoring toss of 35 yards to Ziegler. Ziggy also scored on a 19 yard run. Arryana Barton also made a TD catch (8 yards).

The defense was led by Jessica Salazar (6.0 Total Tackles, 1 Sack, 2.0 Tackles for Loss, 1 Forced Fumble), but other individual standout efforts were turned in by Brittany Demery (5.5 T, 1 Fumble Recovery), Ci Fox-Birdwell (5.0 T), Keyon Harrison (3.5 T, 1 TFL, 1 FR returned for 35 yards and a TD, and Ziegler (1 INT).

Despite the one-sided loss, Pittsburgh had some solid individual performances. Morgan Spencer threw for 100 yards and two scores while being sacked only once, Sonia Osselborn proved her toughness by carrying the rock 19 times on the way to a hard fought 46 yards (1 TD). Osselborn also led her team in All-Purpose yards with 70 (46 Rushing, 19 Receiving, 5 KR). Gina Campese was the game leader in both receptions (4) and receiving yards (41). Jessica Johnson (4 T) and Remy Olinzock (4 T, 1 TFL) led the Rebellion defense.

While the win got the season started down the right road, Atlanta knows their next game, a road matchup with defending LFL champion Chicago (1-0), will determine the path this season will follow. If the Steam is to achieve the stated goal of bringing the Legends Cup to Atlanta, they will have to find a way to take the Eastern Conference title from the Bliss. While a loss in the regular season doesn’t end the Steam season, it would extend the team’s winless streak against Chicago, and that will only make the mountain that much steeper come the postseason.

Coach Robinson, Dakota Hughes, and other players will share their thoughts on the season opener in an article that will be available early next week.

 

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Read 1105 times Last modified on Thursday, 11 May 2017 07:04

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