Sharks Secure 72-67 Victory Against Gunslingers
Nelson Nails Game Winning Touchdown in Nailbiter
JACKSONVILLE, FL - The Jacksonville Sharks returned home tonight after a great road victory in week six. Tonight with a couple new names including Sharks star quarterback Arvell Nelson’s first start at home and former Jaguars now Shark kicker Mike Hollis, your Jacksonville Sharks secured their second win in a row and third of the season making Jacksonville (3-4) as they move up the NAL standings.
The Sharks fell behind at the start with a bobbled touchdown grab by Anthony Robinson on a 4th down hail mary San Antonio opened the game 7-0. However, the Sharks too were eager to score with a quick strike from quarterback Arvell Nelson to WR Nyqwan Murray for the receiving touchdown, Sharks kicker Mike Hollis chipped in the extra point to tie the game. Following an interception thrown by the Sharks veteran quarterback that later led to a San Antonio field goal the first quarter was nothing less than a quarterback duel. San Antonio’s Robert Kent picked up his second touchdown pass of the night with a one-handed grab by receiver Phillip Barnett, while the Sharks bounced back with another touchdown by the former Florida State Seminole receiver Nyqwan Murray closing the gap 17-13 with the Sharks down before the end of the quarter. Sharks defensive back Clifton Duck got Jacksonville the ball with an interception to end the quarter.
Into the second quarter, Jacksonville scored on their opening drive with an Arvell Nelson pass to Sharks star receiver Devin Wilson, giving Jacksonville their first lead of the night 20-17. The Sharks defense definitely fed off of the home crowd advantage, gaining a turnover on downs following a tackle for a loss by Sharks FB/LB Anthony Johnson. The Sharks offense drove down the field where WR/DB Miles Kelly caught a quick pass and broke out to run the ball down to the 1-yard line pinning the Sharks into the redzone. The Sharks finished the drive with another Nyqwan Murray touchdown giving him his third touchdown of the half helping the Sharks to 27-23. The Gunslingers did not let the Sharks have the lead for long as San Antonio’s quarterback Robert Kent threw a touchdown pass to wide receiver Bikembe Kearney to give San Antonio the lead. Before the half the Sharks threw a hail mary before time expired but the attempt to score turned into an interception as the Sharks entered the locker room down 30-27.
The Sharks scored first in the second half with a rocket fast pass by Nelson to Wilson in the corner end zone delivering Jacksonville the early lead 34-30. The Gunslingers kept the game neck and neck, slinging the ball down the field 30-yards from quarterback Robert Kent to receiver Anthony Robinson for his second score of the night. The Sharks struck back with a Nyqwan Murray touchdown, his fourth of the night but with a rushing touchdown by Rahsad Payne the Gunslingers stayed ahead 44-41 until Sharks receiver Devin Wilson made a diving catch to score, a missed extra point put the score 47-44 with two-minutes left. Into the 4th quarter San Antonio threw a touchdown to receiver Tony Sparrow. The Sharks kept up the pace with a Arvell Nelson pass to Miles Kelly but the Gunslingers fired back with a rushing touchdown by Pierre Turner. Jacksonville kick returner Nyqwan Murray returned the touchdown for a score, getting the crowd on their feet and putting the Sharks up 60-58. Needing a stop the Sharks defense held the Gunslingers from the endzone with a sack by Sharks defensive back Markus Smith that forced San Antonio to fourth down and a field goal to cap the drive. With six minutes left in the game Coach Burley and the Sharks drove down the field with the score at 61-60. Trailing by only one-point Arvell Nelson took the game into his own hands with a quarterback sneak to score but the Gunslingers fought back with a rushing score of their own from Pierre Turner with less than a minute left the Sharks found themselves down with the score 67-66. The Sharks got the ball in the red zone and tossed the ball to Miles Kelly who was reliable all night. With the ball on the one-yard line and two-seconds left the Sharks relied on their star quarterback Arvell Nelson who kept the ball and put the game on the line as he went over the goal line to win the game. Jacksonville gains their second win at home and improves to 3-4 sending the hard fought San Antonio Gunslingers back to Texas.
Stars of the night include the game MVP receiver Nyqwan Murray who had a season high five touchdowns, four receiving and one kick return for a touchdown. Quarterback Arvell Nelson had double digit touchdowns with 10 throwing 22 completions for 276 yards and 8 passing touchdowns while driving two rushing touchdowns ending his best night as a Shark. Kicker Mike Hollis, the oldest professional kicker to play the sport, had his ups and downs; he was 6/9 in extra points and wasn’t able to knock down a deuce tonight. The Sharks defense played a crucial role in this game as the Gunslingers showed they can be a high-scoring team. Clifton Duck had the lone interception of the night. Defensive lineman Chei Hill and defensive back Markus Smith each had a sack tonight against Robert Kent who lit up the scoreboard with seven touchdowns against the Sharks. The Sharks play next Saturday in the Shark Tank against their rivals the Orlando Predators (3-3). Tickets for the game are on sale now at jaxsharks.com.
About the Jacksonville Sharks
The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The 2019 & 2017 NAL Champions and ArenaBowl XXIV Champions play all their home games at the Vystar Veterans Memorial Arena. Sharks Nation Memberships for the 2022 season are now available. To become a Shark Nation member or for more information please call (904) 621-0700. Follow the Sharks on Facebook at facebook.com/jaxsharks and on Twitter and Instagram @jaxsharks, as well as the Attack Dance Team at facebook.com/sharkattackdance and Chum at facebook.com/chumsharks.