Fever Struggle in Road Trip to Cedar Rapids, Lose 56-8 - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Fever Struggle in Road Trip to Cedar Rapids, Lose 56-8

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by Tri-Cities Fever Media Relations

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA – The Tri-Cities Fever's first adventure away from the Toyota Center this season turned into more than it bargained for in a 56-8 loss to the Cedar Rapids Titans at the US Cellular Center Friday night.

The Fever offense was stalled by six turnovers, including two in the first half in the red zone. It is the Fever's (1-2) second straight loss since opening the season with a victory.  Tri-Cities is back on the road next Saturday night to take on the expansion Wichita Falls Nighthawks (0-3) in Texas.  Cedar Rapids improves to 3-1 with win, extending its home winning streak to 11 straight games.

The Fever, coming off a disappointing 71-63 loss to Green Bay a week ago, got off to a slow start and could never get untracked offensively.  Tri-Cities lone touchdown of the game came in the third quarter when Houston Lillard connected with Andrew Pierre for a 43-yard touchdown pass on a fourth down.

It's not to say the Fever didn't have more chances. The team's final two drives of the first half ended with fumbles in the red zone and then it opened the third quarter with another turnover. What could have been a 27-21 deficit was quickly turned into a 34-0 hole that proved to be too much to climb out.

Cedar Rapids, which beat the Fever twice last season, jumped out to a 27-0 halftime lead behind quarterback Sam Durley. Durley came into the game leading the IFL in 10 touchdown passes.  He completed 13 of 17 passes for 154 yards and three touchdowns.
The Titans outscored the Fever 29-8 in the second half.

Lillard completed 10 of 22 passes for 106 yards and one touchdown. He threw two interceptions.  Dennis Kennedy led the Fever rushing attack with 8 carries for 35 yards.  Pierre, Steven Whitehead, and JD Woods all had three catches for Tri-Cities.

In addition to the Fever's troubles holding on to the ball, they also struggled to convert on third-downs, seemingly facing a long third down on every series.  Tri-Cities was just 1 of 10 on third downs, and was 3 of 5 on fourth downs. In contrast, Cedar Rapids was 3 of 7 on third down, and did not attempt a play on fourth down.

Neither team scored in the final 10:22 of the game. Quarterback Jamal Londry-Jackson saw his first action of the year, completing 1 of 2 passes for 4 yards in the fourth quarter.