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Sun., Mar. 08, 2015 1:30 PM PDT
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Bolts Best Cardinals in Field Goal Battle
In a game the Chargers opted to sit the vast majority of their starters, the Bolts won 12-9 over the Arizona Cardinals.
The Chargers won the toss and opted to defer, bringing the defense up first. Rookie Logan Thomas started the game at quarterback for the Cardinals with a six-play drive that Jason Verrett ended with a crushing hit on third down. The play limited the damage to a 42-yard Chandler Catanzaro field goal just under three minutes into the game to give Arizona a 3-0 lead. Kellen Clemens and the offense took over, and on the first snap the quarterback connected with Dontrelle Inman for a 21-yard gain to midfield. Three plays later on 3rd-and-9, John Phillips hauled in a pass just a yard shy of the sticks.
On 3rd-and-9, Clemens looked for Tevin Reese in the end zone but the ball fell incomplete. Novak trotted onto the field and booted a 39-yarder to give San Diego a 6-3 lead 10 seconds into the second quarter.
Up-man Torrence Allen grabbed a short kickoff, but he fumbled as he approached the 20-yard line and Arizona recovered. Alden Darby and Greg Ducre paired up for a bone-rattling hit on third down to hold the Cardinals to a field goal, tying the game 9-9. Brad Sorensen relieved Clemens but the offense went three-and-out. However, Thomas Keiser forced the Cardinals to do the same with a strip-sack as Arizona recovered the fumble before booting back to the Bolts. Branden Oliver powered across midfield with a series of strong runs, but the drive stalled at the 19-yard line. Nick Novak put San Diego back ahead 12-9 with a 37 yard field goal. The defense continued it’s strong play by forcing yet another three-and-out, giving the Chargers the ball at their own 24 as the third quarter came to a close.
It was Over When…
On 2nd-and-7 off the interception, running back Marion Grice forcefully carried a number of Cardinals defenders to acquire a new set of downs for the Bolts at the Arizona six-yard line. The Chargers then took a knee to clinch the victory.
Play of the Game
Stat of the Game
The Chargers defense held the Cardinals to just 98 total yards for the game.
“We ran just our basic offense. I think it’s going to give us a good look at what (the Cardinals) do on defense. Hopefully we can learn from this week and be ready to go.” – Quarterback Brad Sorensen
“I’m ready for the regular season. (Preseason) did go by pretty quickly, but I’m excited to see (the Cardinals) again on Monday night in prime time T.V. It’s going to be a great atmosphere.” – Guard Chris Watt
Odds and Ends
The Chargers outgained the Cardinals 347-yards to 98. The Bolts had 167-yards rushing and 180-yards through the air.
Running backs Marion Grice and Branden Oliver had nearly identical stats for the game. Grice had 17 rushes for 79 yards while Oliver had 16 attempts for 71 yards.
Cornerback Greg Ducre and newly signed defensive end Joe Kruger led the team with four tackles each.
Leading the team through the air, tight end John Phillips had a game-high four receptions for 37-yards with his longest at 21-yards.
Rookie guard Chris Watt started at center.