BALTIMORE, MD (LFL360.com) – The Orlando Fantasy made history tonight, recording the franchise’s first-ever win in its second year as starting running back and Game MVP Etta Paul (10 carries/86 yards, 2 TD) and star quarterback Anonka Dixon (5 carries/41 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT) dominated on the ground as the visitors throttled the Baltimore Charm, 36-12.
Things didn’t begin that way, as Baltimore running back Morgan Spencer (1 of 1, 35 yards, 1 TD) found rookie wide receiver Kyle DeHaven (2 TD/offense, 2 INT/defense) for a 35-yard touchdown on the first play of the game. Orlando answered as Paul powered through a gang of would-be tacklers into the end zone and Dixon converted the safety on a quarterback option to give the visitors an 8-6 advantage with 8:44 remaining in the first half. The Fantasy then surged ahead as Dixon scored twice, with one Paul two point conversion as the Charm saw their advantage turn into a two possession deficit at 22-6 with 55-seconds remaining in the period.
Nearly three minutes into the second half, Paul once again found the end zone to pad the lead and Victoria Moreno put the exclamation point on the night, extending the Orlando lead to 36-6. Charm quarterback Stacy Moon (4 of 15, 29 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT) found DeHaven late for the score to cut the lead to 24, but simply this proved to be too little, too late for hosts.
“We had to win [tonight] and I am happy that my team came to play,” said Paul.
For the Baltimore Charm, the loss exposed their rush defense, who surrendered 165 yards on the ground, though the secondary was extremely effective, stifling the Fantasy offense all night long. Baltimore coach Rick Reeder commented that the Fantasy “took away [our] entire game plan.”
If Baltimore hopes to make a playoff run, they will surely have to regroup in time for a match-up against the talented, but untested Cleveland Crush next Friday night.
For Orlando, the historical aspects of the evening are nice, however, to many players, this is simply one stop on the way to their ultimate goal.
Said Paul,“We’re just trying to come together, win a championship and hopefully we will make it to the Lingerie Bowl.”
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