Make us your home page

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

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Storm starts playoff push with tough test

TAMPA — Storm coach Dave Ewart dismissed any talk of the playoffs after Saturday's 71-56 home loss to San Antonio.

"I ain't worried about the playoffs," he said. "We've got to worry about winning a game."

Tampa Bay, losers of three straight, can take a step in the right direction tonight when it hosts Philadelphia, the Arena Football League's top team.

"We've got to get some momentum back," Ewart said.

The two division winners and two wild cards in each conference make the playoffs. Philadelphia (12-3) has clinched the East, and Jacksonville (7-7) leads the South. With four games left, the Storm (6-8) is tied with Cleveland, a half-game behind Georgia (7-8) and a game behind New Orleans (7-7).

Tampa Bay split two games each with Cleveland and Georgia. It lost to New Orleans on April 6 and faces it again July 14.

Brotherly love? The Soul blasted the Storm 83-48 on April 20 in Philadelphia in a game not as close as the score indicated. The Soul led 48-14 at halftime and if it hadn't taken its foot off the gas in the second half, it could have eclipsed the league record of 99 points.

"We have to slow the game down," Ewart said. "(Last time), we tried to get out and run with them. We have to shorten things up."

Missing Williams: When the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League signed WR/KR Chandler Williams two weeks ago, it was unclear how his absence would affect the Storm. After losing two games, Ewart had no problem assessing the damage.

"He was the best football player on this team, period," he said. "Huge loss."

Williams was second on the team in catches (83) and receiving yards (994) and third in touchdowns (17). Williams also had emerged as the main kickoff returner with 839 yards and three touchdowns.

"He was explosive in the return game," Ewart said. "That's hard to replace."

Roster moves: The team will get some help in the kickoff return game tonight after activating Michael Lindsey from injured reserve. Lindsey, the primary kick returner last year, filled the role for seven games before sustaining what the team called only a leg injury. He has 31 returns this season for 562 yards. To make room, DL Richard Jones, who had 15½ tackles in 12 games, was released. … DB Roderick Jenrette, a standout at Tampa's Chamberlain High, signed. He replaces DB Erick McIntosh. The Storm's leading tackler with 72½ went on injured reserve with what was called a lower-body injury.


Storm vs. Philadelphia

When/where: 7:30; Tampa Bay Times Forum, Tampa

Radio: 1250-AM

Records: Storm 6-8; Philadelphia 12-3

Tampa Bay Storm starts playoff push with tough test 06/28/12 [Last modified: Thursday, June 28, 2012 9:33pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Luke Del Rio regains UF starting job, for now


    GAINESVILLE — Luke Del Rio is once again the starting quarterback for No. 21 Florida.

    Luke Del Rio provided a needed spark when he replaced starter Feleipe Franks and rallied Florida past Kentucky.
  2. Four questions the Lightning still has to answer

    Lightning Strikes

    FORT LAUDERDALE — The Lightning made its biggest round of cuts Monday, with some of the big-named prospects heading out.

    Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) looks on from the bench during a shift change at Lightning hockey training camp in Brandon on Monday (09/18/17). In background on right is Nikita Kucherov (86). DIRK SHADD   |   Times  

  3. Nine Florida football players, 62 felony complaints in fraud scandal


    GAINESVILLE — The fraud scandal that has engulfed the University of Florida's nationally ranked football team for weeks exploded Monday with the first detailed accounts of criminal accusations that threaten to derail the Gators' season.

    Florida Gators wide receiver Antonio Callaway (81) runs the ball during the Outback Bowl in January at Raymond James Stadium. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  4. Where Rays shortstop Matt Duffy's lost season leads

    The Heater

    BRADENTON — In a perfect world Matt Duffy would have been in New York on Monday with his Rays teammates enjoying the final off day of the year. Instead, he was on Field 4 at Pirate City on a sweltering afternoon, trying to restart his season.

    Rays shortstop Matt Duffy plays in his first game (since rehab was aborted) with the club's instructional league on Monday at the Pirate City baseball field and spring training complex in Bradenton [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  5. Vinny Lecavalier's jersey retirement will be another classic Vinny moment

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — He was the face of the franchise. He was taken first overall in the 1998 NHL Draft by a franchise at the bottom. Art Williams, the nutty Tampa Bay Lightning owner at the time, proclaimed the 18-year-old from Ile Bizard, a Montreal borough, "the Michael Jordan of hockey."

    Vincent Lecavalier makes a break for the net while playing an exhibition game on Sunday (9/24/17) with the 2017 U.S. Women???‚??„?s National Team at Amalie Arena in Tampa. Lecavalier was the captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning for the 2000???‚??€œ2001 season and between the 2008???‚??€œ2013 and spent his first 14 NHL seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning before signing with the Philadelphia Flyers.