The Baltimore Brigade (7-2) defeated the Washington Valor (1-8), 72-42, Friday night at Royal Farms Arena. The 72 points scored are a Brigade franchise record. Brigade quarterback Randy Hippeard threw for five touchdowns and was named the game’s Most Valuable Player for the seventh time this season. Brigade fullback Rory Nixon was named Offensive Player of the Game after rushing for a franchise-record three touchdowns.
After taking a 7-0 lead on the game’s opening possession, the Brigade forced a Valor three-and-out, setting Baltimore up in scoring position. Hippeard found wideout Quentin Sims in the corner of the end zone to give Baltimore a 14-0 lead with 2:34 left in the first quarter. Valor quarterback Arvell Nelson, who entered the week with 11 touchdowns in just two games, found wide receiver Reggie Gray for an 18-yard score to cut the Brigade lead to 14-7. On the ensuing kickoff, Valor linebacker Alvin Ray Jackson tied the game at 14 when he gathered a loose ball that had bounced off the goalpost. With 5:44 left in the first half, Nixon scored his second rushing touchdown of the game and sixth of the season. Just five minutes after the Valor recovered a loose kickoff, Brigade wide receiver Demetres Stephens did the same, giving Baltimore a 28-14 lead with 4:37 left in the half. On Washington’s first play of the following possession, Nelson found wideout Josh Reese for a 48-yard, catch-and-run touchdown, bringing Washington back within one score. Baltimore managed a field goal before the end of the half, extending their lead to 31-21.
On the third quarter’s first drive, Hippeard and Sims connected in the end zone for the second time, giving Baltimore a 38-21 lead. Nelson then tossed his second touchdown of 40+ yards, finding Gray for a 42-yard score bringing the Valor back within 10. On the following possession, Nixon powered in his third rushing touchdown of the game, setting a Brigade single-game record for rushing touchdowns. Early in the fourth quarter, Nelson tallied his first rushing touchdown of the game, cutting the lead to 45-35. Baltimore quickly answered when Hippeard found wide receiver Milton Williams for his first of two touchdowns. Nelson continues to manufacture big plays, hitting wideout TT Toliver for a 30-yard touchdown to bring the Valor back within 10 points. The final five minutes of the game belonged to Baltimore as the Brigade ran off a 20-0 run to close the game, including touchdowns passes to Williams and wideout Brandon Thompkins and a pick-six by defensive back Joe Powell.
MVP: BAL QB Randy Hippeard – 18/25 passing, 178 yards and five touchdowns
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME: BAL FB Rory Nixon – three rushing touchdowns
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME: BAL DB Joe Powell – six total tackles, one interception returned for a touchdown
The Brigade are back in action next Saturday, June 23, hosting the Albany Empire at 7:30 p.m. at Royal Farms Arena in what will be the team’s final home game of the regular season. The game will be broadcast nationally on CBS Sports Network.