Shock got in the final word as they defeated the Burn 59-35. - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Shock got in the final word as they defeated the Burn 59-35.


SPOKANE, Wash - After a week of verbal jabs from Spokane and Boise, the Shock got in the final word as they defeated the Burn 59-35. With the win, Spokane advances to the National Conference Championship game and will host the Tulsa Talons next Saturday on Spokane Tribe Field at 7 PM.

Spokane's offense sputtered on its first possession and gained only five yards on four plays. Boise's offense took over on the ten-yard line but, like Spokane, struggled to gain any momentum. QB Mark Thorson, who was making just his second career start, was picked off by Spokane's DB Sergio Gilliam on just his third pass attempt of the game. Gilliam, who was selected as the Defensive Player of the game for the second week in a row, has recorded four interceptions in the post-season to go along with 13 in the regular season.

On Spokane's second possession, the offense fired on all cylinders as they capped off a five play 45-yard drive with a 6 yard TD reception by WR Charles Dillon. Dillon, who made a diving catch for the touchdown, earned the Big Game Catch of the game for his reception. Dillon ended the night with three receptions for 43 yards - including his touchdown in the first quarter.

"We wanted to jump out to an early lead and put pressure on Boise's offense," Head Coach Adam Shackleford explained. "Thankfully, our defense saved us and set up Dillon's touchdown."

Spokane's defense was relentless putting continuous pressure on Thorson all night that produced a safety, two sacks, two interceptions and DL Johnie Kirton's first career touchdown.

Late in the third quarter, DL Frank Morton bulldozed through Boise's offensive line and forced Thorson to cough up the ball. Kirton, a former tailback in high school, scooped up the ball and ran 22 yards to score the touchdown.

"Morton made a good play on the QB," Kirton said. "I saw the ball pop out and my eyes lit up. People see me as a lineman and think that I'm slow but I still have my speed."

Thorson was injured on the play and did not return to action. He ended the night completing 48 percent of his passes for 157 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. Thorson was replaced by QB Rudy Carlton who didn't fare much better against Spokane's defense. Carlton completed 41 percent of his passes for 97 yards with one touchdown.

Spokane's QB Nick Davila completed 54-percent of his passes with three touchdowns for 151 passing yards and added a rushing touchdown for Spokane's final score of the first half. WR Raul Vijil led the team in receptions (five) with 106 all-purpose yards and one touchdown.

"We did exactly what we wanted to do," Shackelford said." We forced the QB to try to throw the length of the field, we tackled well on special teams, and offensively it wasn't a great night but we won the football game."

So far this season, Spokane has not lost a home game (ten-straight wins) and will put that record to the test next week against Tulsa

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