SAN DIEGO, CA – The San Diego Fleet (2-1) defeated the San Antonio Commanders (1-2), 31-11 to go above .500 for the first time in franchise history at SDCCU Stadium Sunday evening.
San Diego’s offense came out swinging by moving the chains effectively against a struggling Commander defense.
Fleet running back, Ja’Quan Gardner rushed for 122-yards against the Commanders, including an 83-yard touchdown run in the third quarter which became the longest scoring play in AAF history.
Gardner now has the top two rushing performances in the new league following tonight’s game and his 104-yard rushing performance last week against Atlanta.
With such a powerful offensive line Gardner was able to stand out and so did quarterback Philip Nelson.
Nelson completed 17 of 25 passes, threw for 193-yards and two touchdowns. Both career-highs.
Despite throwing an interception early in the game, Nelson was able to remain calm and throw both of his two touchdown passes to wide receiver Nelson Spruce. One for three yards and another for 18-yards over the middle of the field.
“I have a lot of confidence in our offensive line,” Nelson said. “They’re Incredible.”
The offensive line contributed to much of the success the Fleet had.
In addition to the Fleet’s outstanding offensive performance, their defense matched their energy.
The Fleet defense stood tall. They allowed just 291 yards, had three sacks and forced two turnovers.
One turnover was a 27-yard pick six by Fleet linebacker A.J. Tarpley in the second quarter.
What seemed to be a long night for the Commanders only got worse as they struggled on offense.
Although starting the game off nice with a huge interception by defensive back, De’Vante Bausby, followed by a 47-yard touchdown pass thrown by quarterback Logan Woodside to wide receiver Mekale McKay, the early hype was seized by the Fleet’s defense.
Despite making a couple quarterback changes between Logan Woodside and Marquise Williams, the Commanders could not find a rhythm to carry them on offense.