CHICAGO -- Despite a two-game home winning streak, the Utah Blaze will have to step things up considerably tonight, when the Blaze take on the Chicago Rush.
The game is the first of two road contests for Utah (7-7), still looking for an ALFL playoff berth. The contest will pit the Blaze's third-ranked scoring offense against the Rush's third-ranked scoring defense.
Utah edged the Kansas City Command 61-60 in a shootout last Friday night, but it was the defense that ultimately sealed the victory when DL Caesar Rayford blocked a potential game-tying extra point with one minute left in the game.
The Central Division leading Rush (10-4) have won five of their last six games, including a 58-48 win over the Iowa Barnstormers in their last outing on June 26.
Chicago's Reggie Gray returned back-to-back kickoffs for touchdowns in the fourth quarter to give Chicago its 10th victory of the season.
The Rush currently lead the AFL with 32 interceptions, and rookie DB Vic Hall has already broken the AFL record for interceptions in a single season with 15. Hall also leads the AFL in total tackles this season with 113.0.
Utah QB Tommy Grady notched another eight touchdowns against Kansas City, bringing his total to 103. The National Guard MVP of the week is only 15 shy of setting the AFL's all-time record for TD passes in a season.
Utah is tied with the Spokane Shock at 7-7 for the final National Conference playoff spot, but currently holds the tie-breaker due to its 69-62 victory on April 15. The two teams meet on July 9.