Albuquerque, N.M. – On Saturday night the Gladiators were quick on the draw as they defeated the Mesquite Marshals in a good ole fashioned wild west showdown. At the end of the night, Duke City sent the Marshals hittin’ the dusty trail with a score of 70-24.
Wide receiver Dello Davis started on a big note as he returned the kickoff 50 yards for a touchdown. With the Gladiators on top in just 12 seconds, it was a great start towards the Gladiator victory. Mesquite just couldn’t get going as they fumbled on the first play of their first drive. Each team took turns with the ball but on Duke City’s second drive it was just eight plays and a quarterback push by Bryan Randall to put the Gladiators up 14-0. About five minutes and 22 seconds later, Bryan Randall tossed a 45 yard bomb to wide receiver Damion Clark which gave Duke City an extended lead over the Marshals. At the end of the first quarter, it was 21-0.
In the second, Mesquite started their drive but couldn’t make any progress. Dan Fernandez attempted a field goal from their own 44 yard line when it was blocked by Gladiator defensive end Jon Hatton. The Gladiators take the ball on the Mesquite eight yard line where a five yard touchdown pass from Randall to Davis ensued. Gladiators go up 27-0 and the freight train called Duke City seemed as it was nowhere near stopping. A kick off and three plays later resulted in a Mesquite touchdown on a one yard rush by Mon Williams to finally put points on the board for the Marshals. During a fourth and ten situation, the Marshals forced a fumble where Cameron Blakes recovered. The Marshals drove just six plays and settled for a field goal from the 21. Six plays and 2:26 later, kicker Cody Barber lays in a boot for three more. The Marshals try to drive but extreme pressure from Roosevelt Falls and Fatu Ulale results in a Mesquite fumble and loss on their own eight. The Gladiators knock on the scoreboard door with a quick eight yard toss to Davis for another Gladiator touchdown. At the end of the first half, Gladiators 37 Marshals 10.
As the third quarter commenced, it seemed as if the Marshals were heading in the right direction. Within seven plays, Mesquite scores on a one yard Mon Williams rush. But the Gladiators answer right back and Davis scored quickly on an eight yard reception. It was a hit or miss when it came to Mesquite’s passing game, but eventually paid off when quarterback Aaron Washington tosses a five yarder to Jessie Shields. As the clock winded down, Duke City continued to chip away and Randall gave another one yard rush for touchdown. At the end of the third it was 50-24.
The fourth quarter was proven to be too much for the Marshals. A turnover on downs from the beginning gave the Gladiators more ammunition as a huge 32 yard tag to wide receiver Brock Ringo just added more salt to the wounds of the struggling Marshals. Thirteen plays later, another Duke City score as fullback Landrick Brody thumped in the endzone on a one yard rush. Time had pretty much run out for Mesquite, but that didn’t stop the Gladiators from sealing the deal. With 51 seconds remaining, it only took one play as backup quarterback Taylor Genuser finds Ringo for a huge 45 yard touchdown. The game comes to an end with the score 70-24 and moves the Gladiators to a record of 2-1.
Wide receiver Dello Davis had an outstanding game as he grabbed himself three touchdown catches and a 50 yard return for touchdown. Other notable players include quarterback Bryan Randall as he scored twice on foot and passed for five touchdowns. Defensive back Jayson Serda and Defensive end Roosevelt Falls had big nights as they had 14 and 11 tackles respectively.
The Gladiators play their next game at home on Sunday April 3rd, 2016 against the Amarillo Venom. Game time set for 4 PM at Tingley Coliseum.