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Predators again control Storm, 46-45

Did somebody slip Orlando the keys to the Suncoast Dome?

For the past three years, the Predators have come to town and played as though they own the place.

A league record-crowd of 28,746 looked on as the Tampa Bay Storm tried in vain to deny the visitors their fifth victory in six games this year.

Orlando's 46-45 victory put them alone in first place in the Arena League's National Conference at 5-1. Tampa Bay slipped to 4-2 with its second loss to the Predators this season. Orlando has handed Tampa Bay five of the six losses in franchise history.

The teams' total of 91 points was the biggest in their seven-game, three-season series.

The game was close throughout the second half, when the two rivals matched each other scoring drive for scoring drive. But the game turned on a two-point conversion attempt by Tampa Bay with 3:22 remaining.

Storm kicker Arden Czyzewski, who missed four extra points in the first half, watched on the sidelines as teammate Stevie Thomas could not draw in a low pass from his scrambling quarterback, Jay Gruden.

Ahead 46-45, the Predators hung on to the ball with short sideline passes and fullback blasts that ate the clock and rendered a comeback impossible.

Thomas catching a 45-yard scoring pass for Tampa Bay in the last 22 seconds of the second quarter. But the Predators had the shot before halftime, as Jorge Cimadevilla knocked in a 34-yard field goal as time ran out.