Huge turnaround
Force erase 21-point deficit for 63-62 win

DULUTH - With 7:25 to play, things looked bad for the Force.

They trailed by 21 points. The defense had only stopped Philadelphia's No. 1 scoring offense once in the AFL. The offense had only scored seven points through the whole half.

Then, something changed. The breaks fell the Force's way as they overcame the 21 points by scoring 22 straight including a two-point conversion and a recovered onside kick to beat Philadelphia 63-62.

Wide receiver Troy Bergeron caught two of his three touchdown passes in the span and hauled in the conversion.

"That's arena football," Bergeron said. "The game is never over. All we had to do was keep fighting."

"I've been in football a long, long, long time and have never had that happen," head coach Doug Plank said. "At least we can get together in the locker room and say we played until the last second of the game."

It started with Philadelphia (9-2) kicker Matt Carlo Hughes missing an extra point. Georgia (5-5) answered with its second touchdown of the half on a one-yard dive by quarterback Chris Greisen to cut the deficit to 14 at 62-48.

Philadelphia marched down the field, but for the second time in the game the defense held on third down, forcing a field goal. Hughes missed again and Damien Groce returned the kick off the net deep into Philadelphia territory.

Greisen then hit Bergeron from 7 yards out with 42 seconds left in the game.

Georgia recovered its second onside kick attempt and once again drove through the Soul's defense with Bergeron again hauling in the final pass of the drive cutting the deficit to one.

The Force went for two and the lead with 16 seconds left and it was Bergeron again hauling Greisen's pass with his fingertips.

The last second 43-yard field goal by the Soul sailed wide right and the Force had its second straight win.

"That is why (Bergeron) is one of the best in the game," Greisen said. "He did a great job on the play to make that catch."

Georgia's final-seconds score was in contrast to Philadelphia doing the same to end the first half, taking advantage of a missed Force extra point, to take a 35-34 lead.

The Soul got the ball to start the second half and things just got worse for Georgia.

Philadelphia took the kick- off and drove the ball 45 yards in five plays to extend its lead to 42-34. Then, the Force's Carl Morris, fighting for extra yards by the goal line fumbled the ball to the back of the end zone, giving the Soul a touchback. Six plays and an extra point later, Philadelphia led 49-34.

The two teams traded scores again as Philadelphia's offense kept piling up yards. Then, with the Force trailing by 15, the Soul's Clifton Smith picked off Greisen's pass on four-and-goal from the 2, taking it off the wall.

The Soul moved right down the field again, with Smith ending the drive by taking a direct snap on fourth-and-1 from the seven and sprinting untouched into the end zone.

But Georgia fought back, beating one of the leagues best teams.

"It shows what we are as a team," Bergeron said.