By Kahlil Najar and Emily Zahner
PITTSBURGH –The San Jose SaberCats (2-1) were unable to complete a two point conversion with under three seconds left in the game to lose a tight game 48-47 to the Pittsburgh Power (1-1). Outstanding rookie quarterback Nathan Stanley was able to pull the Cats within the last minute of play as he was able to connect on two touchdowns to Reggie Gray who continued to prove that he deserves the nickname Big Play.
The SaberCats played catch up the entire game. The Power started off with three straight touchdowns from Power QB Tommy Grady which included two passing touchdowns to Prechae Rodriguez and a rushing touchdown of his own to give the power a 21-0 lead after one quarter of play. The Cats were able to get on the board in the second quarter on a five yard pass from Stanley to Huey Whittaker to give the Cats their first points of the game but the Grady found Rodriguez again for two more scores to give Rodriguez four touchdowns in the first half and make it a 35-7 lead for the power. Before the half ended JJ Payne contributed a rushing touchdown and David Hyland made a recovery off the net on the kickoff and dove three yards into the end zone for a touchdown which brought the score to 35-20 at the half.
In the second half, the Cats and Power traded a pair of touchdowns and after the Powers last score Stanley moved the offense down the field where he found Gray from eight yards out in the end zone and brought the game to a seven point deficit. Then on an onside kickoff attempt Marc Scheichl recovered the ball for San Jose and gave the Cats the ball back with 45 seconds left on the clock. Stanley brought the team down again and found Gray for an amazing one-handed over-the-wall touchdown with three seconds left in the game. After the touchdown, the Cats decided to go for the win instead of playing for overtime and Stanley was unable to connect with Willis and brought the score to the final of 48-47.
Stanley had a good game overall as he threw for 260 yards and five touchdowns however his three interceptions proved extremely costly in his first loss of his professional career. Reggie Gray continued to show his magic on the field and he contributed two touchdowns and 126 yards receiving. Huey Whittaker only had 19 yards receiving however those yards netted him three touchdowns on the night.
The SaberCats head home for a game this coming Friday against the Spokane Shock at the SAP Center at 7:30pm PST.