The Cleveland Gladiators fell to the Philadelphia Soul 83-62 despite 404 passing yards and eight touchdowns from QB Arvell Nelson in a Week 15 matchup on Saturday at the PPL Center in Allentown, PA. The Gladiators are now 7-7 on the season and remain in second place in the National Conference standings.
Philly QB Dan Raudabaugh started the game with a two-yard TD pass to TE Adam Smith but Philly missed the extra point which gave way to Cleveland’s first score. Nelson threw to Collin Taylor for the score that extended Taylor’s franchise-record streak to 30 consecutive games with at least one touchdown catch. Philadelphia’s Jeramie Richardson ended the first-quarter with a one-yard touchdown run to make it 13-7 Soul heading into the second.
The Gladiators responded with a 34-yard bomb to start to second quarter from Nelson to WR Quentin Sims that left the game tied at 13 after a missed extra point. Another Richardson TD made it 20-13 Philadelphia with just under 12 minutes left in the first half. Cleveland’s breakout WR Devin Wilson hauled in a 24-yard pass from Nelson to tie the game at 20. Raudabaugh launched a 37-yard Soul TD to Darius Reynolds put Philly back in front. The Glads once again pulled even on a one-yard Larry Beavers TD run to close out the half.
Philly scored their third unanswered TD on the first possession of the third quarter on a 10-yard Raudabaugh to Shaun Kauleinamoku connection that increased the Soul lead to three scores at 48-27. A 12-yard TD catch from Taylor from Nelson cut the Philly advantage to 14 points with 10 minutes left in the third quarter, but the Soul rattled off two more touchdowns which was their largest lead of the game at 62-34.
In the fourth, a 35-yard Nelson bomb to Beavers started things off right for Cleveland to make it 62-41, before Raudabaugh found Reynolds for a five-yard score. The Gladiators received a boost from two straight eight-yard Nelson touchdown passes to Wilson and Sims to get back to within two touchdowns at 69-55, but the Soul posted three more scores to claim victory by the final score of 83-62. With the win, Philadelphia claimed the four-game season series vs. the Gladiators three games to one. The Gladiators have a Week 16 road clash vs. the LA KISS next Saturday before the final game of the regular season.