Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Storm beats Cleveland

Storm quarterback Adrian McPherson runs into the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown in the final minute of the Storm’s 69-47 victory over Cleveland. The former Florida State and Bradenton Southeast High star also threw for eight scores.

AUSTIN ANTHONY | Times

Storm quarterback Adrian McPherson runs into the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown in the final minute of the Storm’s 69-47 victory over Cleveland. The former Florida State and Bradenton Southeast High star also threw for eight scores.

TAMPA — In an opening loss to Jacksonville on March 23, Storm quarterback Adrian McPherson ran for a game-high 58 yards and tied a team record with five rushing touchdowns.

Related News/Archive

Saturday, the former Florida State standout showed off his arm.

McPherson threw for eight scores and the defense came up with big plays as the Storm defeated Cleveland 69-47 in front of an announced 10,142 at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

"We all knew when the lights come on, he has that little extra aura," coach Dave Ewart said of McPherson. "And he's only going to get better."

McPherson was an efficient 20 of 33 passing in the opener but looked much sharper Saturday. The former Bradenton Southeast star was 25-of-38 for 362 yards and added 31 yards and two scores on the ground.

"I've been in (the Canadian Football League) the last five years," said McPherson, who played in the Arena League before that. "I've had two weeks of training camp here, so it's going to slowly come for me."

Joe Hills was his main target, catching 10 passes for 155 yards and three scores. Former Robinson High wideout Greg Ellingson caught five passes for 95 yards and two scores, and Michael Lindsey had five catches for 55 yards and two TDs.

Tampa Bay (1-1) again mustered little pass rush but had some key defensive plays, forcing five turnovers. Linemen R.J. Roberts and Rodney Beamon each recovered fumbles, defensive back Jean Fanor picked off a pass late and defensive back Chris Smith had two interceptions, one in the end zone on the final play of the first half.

Three of those turnovers led to scores. The defense forced also forced a critical turnover on downs late, and Paul Griffin blocked an extra point try in the first half.

"(The defense) bailed us out," McPherson said.

Tampa Bay took control midway through the third quarter. McPherson hit offensive lineman Alfred McCullough on a screen pass for a 17-yard score and a 42-34 lead. Then after Beamon's fumble recovery, Ellingson hauled in a 15-yard TD pass to make it 49-34. Cleveland (0-2) never got closer than eight the rest of the way.

"We did okay defensively, but I'm not satisfied there," Ewart said. "We don't have any veteran players, really, defensively, so we're searching for leadership. But there's no doubt in my mind that we're going to get better at it."

McPherson punched in a 1-yard TD and hit Hills for two first-half scoring strikes, including one on which the 6-foot-5 wideout flipped over the end zone wall to give the Storm the lead for good at 28-27.

"(Hills) is just a beast," Ewart said.

The Storm hits the road for the first time Saturday to face Utah. It returns home April 12.

Storm beats Cleveland 03/30/13 [Last modified: Saturday, March 30, 2013 11:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Ole Miss football coach Hugh Freeze resigns over 'inappropriate conduct'

    College

    OXFORD, Miss. — Mississippi coach Hugh Freeze was at Jackson Country Club on Wednesday night, giving his yearly rah-rah speech about the Rebels overcoming adversity and getting ready for the college football season.

    If Hugh Freeze hadn’t resigned, Ole Miss says it would have fired him for violating his contract’s moral turpitude clause.
  2. Fennelly: With playoff chase in high gear, it's time for Rays to make a move

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    Thursday was an off-day for the Rays, who are coming off a solid western swing. I assume there was no rest for the tag-team Rays baseball brain trust of Matt Silverman, Erik Neander and Chaim Bloom, whose job it is to improve this team in advance of the trade deadline. They've done a good job …

    Evan Longoria is glad to see the Rangers coming to town: He’s batting .296 against them with 15 homers and 56 RBIs in 69 career games.
  3. Rays vs. Rangers, 7:10 p.m. Friday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Rangers

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Alex Cobb #53 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  4. Good news for Rays on Steven Souza Jr. as MRI shows 'no damage' to hip

    Blogs

    The Rays got good news today on RF Steven Souza Jr., as an MRI showed "no damage" to his left hip.

    Steven Souza Jr. #20 of the Tampa Bay Rays holds his leg after hurting himself trying to steal second base in the first inning against the Oakland Athletics at Oakland Alameda Coliseum on July 19, 2017 in Oakland, California.
  5. Bucs raise prices for single tickets to marquee games

    Blogs

    The Bucs will have single-game tickets for 2017 home games on sale July 28, with a new wrinkle: the best games will cost more for fans.

    Bucs fans cheer Jameis Winston after a victory in their final home game of the 2016 season. Individual tickets for the Bucs' three most coveted home games (against the Patriots, Bears and Giants) will cost more in 2017.