05/09/2018 10:15 AM
JACKSONVILLE- The Jacksonville Sharks (2-3) host the winless Lehigh Valley Steelhawks (0-4) this Saturday night in the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena for Hawaiian Night. If the Sharks win, they will be 3-3 (.500) and begin their first win streak of the 2018 season. The Sharks can’t look beyond this game or else they might come up short.
Last week against the Mammoths, the Sharks had an empty first quarter, but exploded in the second quarter dominating Maine on offense and defense, scoring 26 points before halftime. Quarterback Adrian McPherson threw for 219 yards and three touchdowns. Fullback Derrick Ross also had one of his best games of the season, rushing the ball for 19 yards and found the end zone a total of three times on the night. A fairly-new face for the Sharks came up huge in last week’s victory, as Wide Receiver Tom Gilson found the end zone one time and had 117 receiving yards.
The Jacksonville defense got to the quarterback multiple times, forcing a lot of bad passes, thrown away passes, an interception, and being sacked many times. Defensive Back Dallas Jackson got his first interception as a Shark against the Mammoths, as he saved the Sharks from giving up a touchdown, making it a closer game before halftime. As well as Jackson, Defensive Back Marvin Ross returned a missed field goal for a 57-yard touchdown with just seconds to go in the second quarter.
McPherson has become more comfortable in the pocket and made some quick throws that turned into great yards, in addition he has become a leader on the Sharks offense which was greatly needed after the Sharks offense struggled so far at home. Since he joined the team, McPherson and new receiver Tom Gilson has really connected in both games that McPherson started in and this bond looks to strength throughout the season. Their most memorable play so far was McPherson’s touchdown pass in Portland that ended with an incredible one-handed grab by Gilson in the endzone. For the defense, Linebacker Charlie Hunt played multiple roles in last week’s game both on offense and defense, as he played Wide Receiver for a little bit and his primary position at Linebacker. Hunt is also coming back from a back injury and should be 100% by the time the Sharks host the Steelhawks.
The Steelhawks are searching for their first win as the Sharks are desperately wanting and needing to go 3-3 to reach that .500 milestone. The playoffs are still a long ways away, but there isn’t much wiggle room when a team starts 2-3 in their first five games.
The Sharks face the Steelhawks a total of two times this season, this one being in Jacksonville and the second match-up being in Allentown, Pennsylvania on June 30. A victory this week is a much needed victory for the Sharks, so be sure to come out and support the Sharks in a tropical Hawaiian-themed night this Saturday at 7:00 pm (ET). This Saturday’s game will be streamed on Youtube Live, a link to the stream will be posted on www.facebook.com/jaxsharks
About the Jacksonville Sharks
The Jacksonville Sharks are members of the National Arena League (NAL). The 2017 NAL Champions and ArenaBowl XXIV Champions and play all home games at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Sharks Nation Memberships for the 2018 season are now available. Shark Nation Memberships start as low as $75. To become a Shark Nation member or for more information please call (904) 621-0700. Follow the Sharks on facebook at facebook.com/jaxsharks and on Twitter and Instagram @jaxsharks, as well as the Attack Dance Team at facebook.com/sharkattackdance and Chum at facebook.com/chumsharks.