Sunday, January 20, 2008

SPORTS: Ice Storm fall in USA Bowl

SPORTS: Ice Storm fall in USA Bowl

January 19, 2008
HOLLYWOOD, Fla. — The Vermont Ice Storm's season came up just short of perfection.

The Colchester-based semiprofessional football team suffered a 22-14 loss to the Detroit Black Ravens on Saturday in the USA Bowl, which served as the AAA national championship game.

The Ice Storm, who won the Empire Football League title in October and were named the American Football Association national champions Friday, finished the year with a 15-1 record.

Saturday, the No.¤1-seeded Black Ravens struck for a pair of long touchdown passes in the first quarter. They were successful with both of their two-point conversions and carried a 16-0 lead into halftime.

The Ice Storm played without starting quarterback Brad Rudderman, who stayed back in Vermont for the delivery of his baby.

Backup quarterback Matt Paul led a spirited second-half rally, connecting on a pair of third-quarter touchdown passes.

He hooked up with Austin Partain for 12-yard touchdown and hit Zack Howe on a 3-yard slant pattern for another score. Evan Hicks nailed both extra-point kicks to cut Detroit's lead to 16-14.

However, the Black Ravens (14-10), a team that included 14 former Division I college players, thwarted Vermont's comeback bid with a fourth-quarter touchdown.

Paul completed 16 of 34 passes for 203 yards with two touchdown passes and two interceptions. Partain made four of the receptions for 89 yards.

Corey Belida snagged two interceptions for the Ice Storm.

Start the year off right. Easy ways to stay in shape in the new year.

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