The Tampa Bay Storm are Area Bowl Bond!
The Tampa Bay Storm (12-5, 1-0) punched their ticket to Arena Bowl XXIII next Friday in Spokane, claiming victory in the third installment of the “War On I-4” by defeating the Orlando Predators (8-9, 1-1) by a score of 63-62 in a barnburner of the AFL American Conference Championship game. The trip to next week’s championship contest marks the eighth ArenaBowl appearance by the franchise.
A series of Orlando penalties proved to determine the game’s outcome, forcing Predators kicker Carlos Martinez to re-try an extra point that initially had tied the game at 63 after Orlando roared back from a 21-point deficit at the start of the second half. Rather than tying the game, however, Martinez’s kick sailed and hit the right goalpost, allowing the Storm to maintain a one-point lead. Martinez later received another opportunity to win the game with a 49-yard field goal attempt with two seconds remaining, but the try fell short, deeming the Storm the 2010 American Conference champs.