02/23/2009 4:31 PM
Out of the Shock's 56 game history (regular season and post-season) two were named in top-10 of all-time.
SPOKANE V. TENNESSEE VALLEY – 2008 ARENA CUP
For the 10, 662 people that packed the Arena on August 25th it was a game that they will not soon forget. Coaches, players and fans alike – no one will forget that game. Today, in celebration of the af2’s 10th anniversary, the league named the 2008 ArenaCup as the greatest game in the league’s history.
“It was a great experience – to play the ArenaCup at home, that was something that those players earned,” Head Coach Adam Shackleford explained. “To set things up the way we did and then to fall short is certainly not an easy pill to swallow. But when you are talking about one of the greatest games of all time – win or lose – it’s certainly nice to be a part of that.”
After an intense four quarters of play that ended in a 48-48 tie, the Shock got the ball first and took a 55-48 lead on a Kelvin Dickens’ 25-yard TD catch from QB Nick Davila. Colston and the Vipers then responded with a drive that culminated with a 24-yard Nix TD grab that brought the team within one point, 55-54. After a timeout to think things over, Tennessee Valley Head Coach Dean Cokinos decided to go for a two-point conversion attempt to decide the game. As Colston dropped back to pass he couldn’t find an open receiver and decided to tuck the ball and run for it. After eluding a Spokane defender at the 2-yard line, Colston dove into the end zone for the game-winning two-point conversion.
Spokane, which finished with an 18-2 overall record, was paced by rookie Davila. Davila set ArenaCup records for completions (35), passing yards (437) and touchdown passes (8). WR Raul Vijil’s 166 yards receiving also set a new ArenaCup record.
“I give Tennessee Valley all the credit,” Shackleford said. “They were one play better than us that day.”
For Shock Owner/CEO Brady Nelson, it is an honor to be recognized on this list but it doesn’t make the loss any easier.
“It’s an honor to be a participant in one of the most epic games in league history. The fact that we lost still hurts but to be recognized in that company is certainly an honor,” Nelson said.
Despite the disappointment of all Shock fans in attendance, there is no argument that the 2008 ArenaCup was a great game and after today’s announcement it will go down as the greatest.
SPOKANE V BAKERSFIELD – 2ND ROUND PLAYOFFS
The Shock also earned the #6 spot on the top-10 games of all-time for their playoff match-up against the Bakersfield Blitz in 2006.
All season long the Shock had a flair for the dramatic. In the first playoff game in franchise history, things were no different. In a game that seemed like a heavyweight fight, each team exchanged offensive punches throughout the game.
The Shock’s final drive of the game was set up by a 20-yard kick return by offensive player of the game Antwone Savage and left :14 seconds on the clock. With the Shock down 47-43, scoring a touchdown was the only way to earn a victory. After QB Kyle Rowley and Savage connected for a 10-yard completion, and a Bakersfield penalty, the Shock quickly called a timeout. With only :06 left, Rowley connected with WR Charles “ET” Frederick for a 20-yard touchdown that sealed the victory.
After the game, Head Coach Chris Siegfried--who seemed overcome with emotion--said: “I went in at halftime and told the guys to play their hearts out for the next 30 minutes. They went out there and played an exceptional half for me.”
Clearly, it was a game that changed the face of the franchise and will not soon be forgotten by af2 fans and Shock fans alike.
Here is the list of the top-10 all-time games in its entirety:
TOP 10 af2 GAMES OF ALL-TIME
1. August 25, 2008 – Tennessee Valley at Spokane – 2008 ArenaCup
2. August 10, 2001 – Richmond at Quad City – 2001 ArenaCup
3. August 25, 2007 – Tulsa vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton – 2007 ArenaCup
4. August 10, 2000 – Tennessee Valley at Quad City – 2000 ArenaCup
5. June 10, 2006 – Oklahoma City at Tulsa
6. August 12, 2006 – Bakersfield at Spokane
7. August 7, 2004 – Louisville at Quad City
8. July 15, 2005 – Green Bay at Albany
9. August 7, 2004 – Memphis at Florida
10. July 19, 2008 – Tulsa at Oklahoma City