The Storm advanced to their tenth consecutive United Bowl with a 52-50 win over defending champion Iowa. Sioux Falls now turns its attention to undefeated Arizona.
Sioux Falls and Arizona have met twice this season, and despite losing both games, the Storm scored a combined 90 points, though head coach Kurtiss Riggs says they’ll need even more offense to win another IFL championship.
“Well, we need to put up more, you know they average I think 62 points a game, so we’ve got to try to shoot for at least sixty and that’s got to be our goal is to get around that range,” Storm Coach Kurtiss Riggs said.
The Storm offense will be tested by a Rattlers defense that leads the league in sacks with 29, and will dial up a blitz on nearly every play.
“We’ve got to be good up front, and the running back has to pick up the blitz. That is the two keys to our success right there. Then it comes to our receivers getting open and then me getting the ball to them, but it starts up front and it starts with our back,” Storm Quarterback Lorenzo Brown Jr. said.
The Rattlers scored 121 total points in their two wins over the Storm, who will attempt to hang with Arizona by slowing the IFL’s number one rushing offense.
“Well the one thing we have to do is slow down the running game, they’ve done an outstanding job being able to run the football and the other thing that Arizona has been able to do is they haven’t turned the ball over, I think they are plus 15 on the turnover margin,” Storm Defensive Coordinator Brian Hermanson said.
The long list of challenges facing the Storm also includes the thousands of fans that will fill the Gila (Hee-luh) River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
“Well the atmosphere is going to be tough. You know 15,000 fans, they really play with emotion and we’ve got to try to control that, we’ve got to try to maintain, grind it out and pick and choose when we go for our shots,” Riggs said.
The Storm and Rattlers cross paths Saturday in Glendale, Arizona. Kickoff is set for 8:05 central time.