Defense leads Fever past Cavalry - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Defense leads Fever past Cavalry

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From Tri-Cities Fever
KENNEWICK, Wash. - The Tri-Cities Fever wanted to leave a lasting impression for the fans at the Toyota Center on Saturday night.
While the 2013 season will not included a defense of the Intense Conference championship, recording a near shutout during the final home game was a nice sendoff heading toward 2014.
The Fever nearly posted a shutout, in a convincing 33-6 win over the Wyoming Cavalry. The Fever finish the season with a 5-2 record at home, and nearly pulled of a feat that no one can remember the last time it happened.
"I can't remember (a shutout)," said Fever coach Adam Shackleford. "The defense played pretty darn good."
The Cavalry (1-12) ended the Fever's shutout bid with less than a minute left in the fourth quarter when Mark Henderson caught a 32-yard touchdown pass from Stephen Panasuk.
"To hold them to six points, that's pretty good," said defensive back Rudell Crim. "All of what we did came from preparation throughout the week."
Crim led the Fever defensive with three interceptions. The Fever forced Wyoming into seven turnovers and held the Cavalry to just 160 yards of total offense.
"Once we started doing our jobs," Crim said. "Forcing turnovers and having fun we got going from there."
In addition to the seven turnovers, the Fever recorded four sacks and five tackles-for-loss.
While the stats say one thing, the scoreboard was not as kind to the Fever until late in the second quarter. The Cavalry controlled the tempo on offense as the Fever had just six offensive plays in the first quarter.
Wyoming had the ball inside the Fever 10-yard line twice in the first quarter, but both times fumbled the ball away.
Tri-Cities finally broke the scoreless tie late in the second quarter on a 32-yard touchdown pass from Dante Warren to Tre Young. Less than a minute later, Warren pushed the lead to 13-0 on a 5-yard scoring run.
"Despite the way the game was going, I didn't feel real comfortable until late in the third quarter," Shackleford said.
That's when Keithon Flemming scored on a 12-yard touchdown run to push the lead to 19-0.
The lead grew to 26-0 on a Jackie Chambers 3-yard catch from Warren early in the fourth quarter. Keola Antolin, capped the scoring on a 4-yard run with 3:38 left in the game.
"We didn't get too many opportunities tonight, so we had to take advantage of them," Young said. "We came out and did exactly what we needed to do."
Young caught a team-high three passes for 35 yards and the touchdown.
Warren, who left last week's game in the third quarter with an injury, completed 11 of 20 passes for 112 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed 12 times for 51 yards and a score.
In addition to Crim's three interceptions, Dennis Rogan and Donyae Coleman also had interceptions for the Fever.
"We knew once they had to start throwing the ball we had the advantage," Shackleford said.
It is the Fever's third straight win over Wyoming this season and ends the season series with a 3-1 mark.
The Fever has won five of its last six games heading into its final game against Nebraska (9-4). It is the last regular season game for both teams.
"We want end the season on a high note and build some momentum for next season," Young said.
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