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Force ready to forget past

FLOWERY BRANCH - Chris Greisen didn't need to see the play again.

It's been four weeks, but he still remembers. He saw Chris Pauley catch his pass. He watched him scoot into the end zone.

"He seemed to run in kind of nonchalantly acting like it was no question," Greisen said. "I put up my arms, I remember, acting like we won the game, then I see the ref put up his arms and patting the wall saying he was down. I fell down to the ground. Very disappointed."

The pass was the Force's last-second attempt against the Orlando Predators in Week 4. The out-of-bounds call sealed the 50-45 loss and dropped Georgia to 1-3.

Four weeks later, the play repeats clearer in the players' minds than on any TV screen.

"We haven't seen that play at all," Greisen said. "It is all burned into our minds. It has been about three or four weeks now. It is still lingering back there, but it is not in the front of our brain that is for sure."

How could it? Since the loss, the Force (3-3) have won two straight, had a bye and seen roster changes so significant the receiver, Pauley, who nearly scored the game-winner isn't on the roster anymore.

"I was appreciative of the players that had played for us over the past few weeks that maybe stepped into roles that they weren't going to be accustomed to and played very well," said Force head coach Doug Plank. "We managed to win the last two weeks in a row with players that really weren't slated to be our starters at the beginning of the season."

And after the bye, two of those slated starters are back for Orlando's (5-2) visit.

On offense, the team's only returning receiver from last season, Troy Bergeron, returns from a lingering thigh injury and defensive back Hamin Milligan is set to start his first game since injuring his shoulder in last season's playoff loss to Columbus. Milligan had 100 tackles, 14 pass deflections and four interceptions for the Force last season.

"It does feel good to get players back," Plank said. "The only thing you worry about when you get players back, they haven't worked in conjunction with the other players. Especially in the secondary and receiving corps.

"(Bergeron and Milligan) know what they are supposed to be doing and we are playing against an opponent that we are really familiar with. We know their players probably just as well as we know the players on our own team."

Familiarity or not, Milligan is just ready to return. He spent too many practices watching and too many games without shoulder pads.

"It's been frustrating. It has been a long wait," Milligan said. "But, I think, this is probably one of the best times to come back to try to start this run off. It is frustrating sitting on the sideline knowing that I can't do anything about it but watch."

Offensive lineman Shane Grice will also start today after suffering a high ankle in the win over Kansas City.

Two weeks ago, the Force's mantra was about getting to .500 for the bye. Now, healthier, the teams eyes have switched to the run it hopes to make over the final 10 games - starting with this week's co-division leader.

"If we can make up one game here that will be huge," Greisen said. "It will be exciting, and a race to the end like everyone thought it would be."

SideBar: Predators at Force

When: Today, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Arena at Gwinnett Center

TV/Radio: CSS/790-AM