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ARENA FOOTBALL

Avengers Can't Stay With San Jose

June 09, 2002|Mike Terry | From Staff and Wire Reports

With six games left in the regular season, the Avengers can set their sights on making the Arena Football League playoffs.

That's because they don't have to face San Jose again--unless the teams meet in the postseason.

The undefeated SaberCats, who have devoured every team in their path this year, overcame a nine-point halftime deficit to overrun the Avengers, 52-33, before 10,122 at Staples Center.

San Jose (8-0) demonstrated that passing isn't the only way to score, getting five rushing touchdowns--three by Barry Wagner, who also returned a fourth-quarter interception 19 yards for a score.

SaberCat quarterback Mark Grieb did not have his best night, but still completed 17 of 32 passes for 179 yards, with one touchdown and one interception.

Avenger quarterback Tony Graziani had an even tougher time against the San Jose defense, completing 16 of 36 passes for 106 yards. He threw two touchdown passes and two interceptions.

It was the second straight loss for Los Angeles, which is 4-4.

Graziani completed only three of 17 passes in the second half.

Mike Terry

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In other AFL games:

Andy Kelly threw 10 touchdown passes, leading the Dallas Desperados to a 79-65 victory over the Indiana Firebirds at Dallas.... Carlos James caught a go-ahead 10-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter of the Buffalo's Destroyers' 40-35 victory over the New York Dragons at Buffalo, N.Y.... Billy Dicken threw four touchdown passes in less than three quarters as the Chicago Rush routed the Detroit Fury, 53-17, in Chicago.... Jay McDonagh threw eight touchdown passes, helping the New Jersey Gladiators to a 70-42 victory over Grand Rapids Rampage at East Rutherford, N.J.

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