Image via Twitter from @aafcommanders
Kenneth Farrow II rushed for an AAF-record 142 yards to power the San Antonio Commanders to a 12-11 victory over the previously undefeated Birmingham Iron on Sunday in Birmingham.
The Commanders (2-2) snapped a two-game losing streak and earned the first road victory in franchise history. The Iron fell to 3-1.
“The Iron have a good, solid football team,” Commanders coach Mike Riley said. “They are very, very sound and physical. They are really hard to score against when you get down in the red zone, as everybody saw. Both teams had to fight to the end and I was real proud that we won the game.”
Farrow, the Commanders’ leading ball carrier on the season, started at running back against the Iron and had the bulk of the carries. Trey Williams also saw some action at running back. The Commanders finished with 161 rushing yards as a team.
“Ken is a good solid player,” Riley said. “We have good running backs. Ken is a good example of that group and had a very special night. He ran hard, worked hard. All of it was hard. The game was hard. It was physical, hard football.”
Farrow had a big part in the Commanders’ only touchdown drive of the game in the third quarter. Williams finished the drive with a 12-yard touchdown run that put the Commanders up 9-3.
The Commanders got their best starting field position of the game in the fourth quarter after a fumble recovery. Nick Rose kicked a 20-yard field goal with 3:58 left to extend the Commanders’ lead to 12-3. That field goal came after the Iron stuffed a series of Commanders running plays on a goal-line stand.
“Birmingham has been the leading red zone defense in the league,” Riley said. “We just about tried it all. We’re just going to have to go back and look at it again. At some point you have to block them to get into the end zone. We didn’t. They stopped us and that’s what kept the game interesting all the way down to the end.”
Commanders quarterback Logan Woodside completed 11-of-25 passes for 106 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions.
“I thought Logan did a great job of competing and making some plays and doing some things we needed to do,” Riley said. “We didn’t throw the ball as effectively throughout the game as we wanted to. That was due both to the way the game was going and what we tried to do with the football when we got it, which was run the ball primarily.
“Also the pressure he got made it tough to make some throws. And then we hit some big throws. On one in particular we got a penalty, which was crazy bad timing.”
The Commanders scaled back some of the rotations they used in earlier games. Instead of using three running backs, the stuck with Farrow and Williams. And Marquise Williams, who saw time at quarterback the previous two games, was not involved in this game.
The Iron made the game close late. Trent Richardson scored on a 1-yard run with 1:41 remaining. Luis Perez threw for the two-point conversion to cut the Commanders’ lead to one point.
In the AAF’s substitute for an on-side kick, Commanders safety Orion Stewart made an interception to end the Iron’s last hope.
The Commanders have two more road games before returning to the Alamodome. Next up is the Arizona Hotshots on Sunday at 7 p.m. Central (NFL Network).
Images from Twitter.com