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Apollos outfight Salt Lake City in elements to go 4-0

Florida Football Insiders



Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Despite having to battle not only their Salt Lake City opponent but also the nasty cold and elements, the Orlando Apollos remained perfect on Saturday night with their fourth straight win 20-11.

Steve Spurrier’s bunch, once again, led by quarterback Garrett Gilbert (above) carried Orlando with 244 yards passing and a second-half touchdown toss to former Buccaneers receiver Dontae Dye to give the Apollos a cushion.

Orlando further built on a 6 – 3 halftime lead by cashing in with a second touchdown drive in the fourth quarter to the help them put the game away.

Battling game time temperature in the 30s and steady snow that had been falling at Rice Eccles Stadium in the afternoon and continued throughout the game, the Apollos were not fazed.

Orlando running back Akeem Hunt ran for just 26 yards, but his key 4th quarter two yard touchdown run gave the eventual decisive Apollos lead 20 – 11.

The Stallions, coached by Dennis Erickson, had two chances late in the game to cut into the lead late but first elected to punt and pin Orlando in deep with 9 minutes to go. Then, getting the ball back one more time with 2:47 remaining, but still down by nine points, the Orlando defense stopped Salt Lake one more time on downs to seal the deal.

Former Dolphins reserve and Michigan star RB  DeVeon Smith led the Apollos with 51 yards rushing and veteran receiver Charles Johnson gave Orlando another 100 yard receiving game finishing with a hard earned 105 yards in the snow.

The game featured two noteworthy coaches, as Spurrier from the Gators went against Erickson from the Hurricanes, in a game where the two combined for three national championship wins in college. However, they never coached against each other while enjoying their college successes.

Of course both went to success not only at other colleges, but also coached in the NFL- Spurrier with the Redskins and Erickson with both the Seahawks and the 49ers, as head coach in the mid 1990s.

Orlando and the Birmingham Iron (3-0) remain the two unbeatens in the Alliance.

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