Storm Too Strong for River Kings

by Logan Hernandez

DODGE CITY, KS - In a week that saw The Southwest Kansas Storm prepare for three different opponents, they were able to shut out the outside noise and get an exhibition win. The Storm started the week expecting to play The Billings Outlaws, but after a change in the schedule The Oregon Blackbears were expected to come to town. After unforeseen circumstance that was no longer the case, and the Storm were awarded a 2-0 Forfeit win over Oregon. Through diligent work amongst the front office staff, Southwest Kansas was able to secure an exhibition game with the Cedar Rapids River Kings. The game started off with Southwest Kansas leading 1-0 just three seconds in as Cedar Rapids was unable to get the opening kickoff out of the endzone. The Storm would stop Cedar Rapids on the opening drive, with great field position Southwest Kansas was able to get into the Ozone Roofing "Ozone" on a Vincent DiLeo II 1 Yard TD Run. It didn't take long for Cedar Rapids to answer back bringing the score to 6-7. The Storm would be methodical on their next drive where QB Caden Walters would eventually find WR Todd Athey in the Ozone for a 4 Yard TD Pass. After a missed PAT, the score would be 13-6. The first quarter would end with that score. The Storm Defense would stand tall as Cedar Rapids took their next drive down to the 1 Yard Line, but were unable to convert it into any points. The next drive would go for another TD for the Storm after being set up in good position by a long run by QB Matt Struck. Struck would eventually find WR Jonah Morris in the Ozone. Dillon Burkhard would nail the PAT through the Chris Boys Agency Uprights giving Southwest Kansas a 20-6 advantage. However, Cedar Rapids would not go away. They would score on a 16 Yard Pass. After the attempt they would elect to go for 3 points. Even after a defensive holding call on the initial try, the Storm Defense would hold them without anything extra. This would go on to be the final score for Cedar Rapids in the game. On the next drive Southwest Kansas' offense would find the Ozone yet again. This time a reception by WR Da'Quan Bailey Brown, extending the lead 27-12. Cedar Rapids looked as though they would try to claw back in, but a tipped pass turned into an interception in the Ozone by DB Aulden Knight with just 35 seconds to half time. That would be plenty of time as Struck found DiLeo II on a short pass right into the Ozone. This would extend the lead to 34-12, which is what the score would be at the end of the half. The second half would prove to be all Storm all half. The opening kickoff went to the second line to new-signee LB Monty Montgomery. This would give Southwest Kansas starting field position inside the Guthrie Floorcovering Redzone. It would only take two plays for Walters to find Athey in the back of the Ozone. Extending the Storm's lead to 41-12. After a failed Fourth-Down, the Storm would regain possession. This drive would end in Walters finding WR Eugene Minter on a 31 Yard TD pass right into the Ozone, after the extra point the lead would be extended to 48-12. After an interception by DB Keon Clary, it wouldn't take long for Walters to find Minter again, on a 14 Yard Pass extending the lead to 55-12. The next drive for Cedar Rapids would end in similar fashion as DB Dillon Thomas would get his hands on the interception this time. Matt Struck would play the fourth quarter and it didn't take him long to find Morris, after breaking three tackles Morris would take it into the Ozone bringing the score to 62-12. After Cedar Rapids failed to convert on fourth down, the Storm would take back over. This drive ending with a similar result. A Four Yard Pass to Morris into the Ozone, bringing it to the final score of 68-12 in favor of the Storm. The Southwest Kansas Storm will be back in action on Sunday June 2nd at 2:00 P.M. at United Wireless Arena, and special guest KC Wolf will be present for pictures and autographs. Doors will open at 1:00.