IWFL: Pittsburgh Passion Jumping Into The Shark Tank In New York


Coming off a bye week, the Pittsburgh Passion head to the Big Apple Saturday to renew their rivalry with the New York Sharks in Independent Womens Football League action. The Black and Gold won the first meeting Saturday, May 9 in the home and home series 32-18 at Cupples Stadium.

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This week the matchup will be at Floyd Bennett Field, part of the Aviator Sports Complex in Brooklyn, New York. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. Pittsburgh leads the overall series 7-2. The Passion are 3-1 against the Sharks in New York and 4-1 at home. The last time the Sharks tasted victory in Brooklyn was June 2010 when they defeated the Black and Gold 27-10.

Both teams are leading their divisions. Teresa Conn’s crew, at 4-0, are in first place in the Mid Atlantic Divison. Offensive coordinator Adam Santoro’s unit generated 194 points in league play and is averaging 48.5 points per game. Meanwhile, defensive coordinator Janice Masters group has surrendered a total of 32 points.

Coming into this week’s matchup, quarterback Lisa Horton has already thrown 17 touchdowns. Her career best stands at 23 touchdowns back in 2013. Wide receiver Rachel Wojdowski has hauled in seven of those scoring strikes. Angela Baker, who has four touchdown catches, is 61-yards short of 1,000 receiving yards in her career.

Tara Catone has already rushed for the most yards by a rookie running back with 557 and has contributed four touchdowns. The Passion record for most touchdowns by a rookie is eight. She set the single-game rushing record with 277 yards on 19 carries in the first meeting with the Sharks.

Meanwhile, defensive tackle Octavia Griswold is only one sack away from 10 career sacks while defensive end Kim Zubovic is three away from 15 career sacks.

New York has built a respectable 4-1 record under head coach Richard Harrigan, and is tied with the Montreal Blitz for first place in the IWFL‘s North Atlantic Division. Last week, the Sharks won on the road as they defeated the Connecticut Wreckers 38-0.

Those 38 points against the Wreckers was the most points in a single contest this season by the Sharks offense, having recorded 138 total points so far, with an average 27.6 points per game.

The shutout of the Wreckers was the second time this season that New York’s defense, led by linemen Manouchka Joseph and Telisha Brown, kept the opposition off the scoreboard, shutting down the Washington Prodigy 19-0 in Week 3.

Up Next: The Passion are back home Saturday, June 6 for a rematch with the Toledo Reign (1-4). Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Cupples Stadium. Pittsburgh shut out the Reign 66-0 in the season opener Saturday, April 11 at Don Paul Stadium.

From The Clipboard: According to reports, running back Ciara Chic, last season’s leading rusher, will be rejoining the team soon for the remainder of this season. The former West Virginia University track star rushed for 511 yards on 92 carries and four touchdowns in 2014.

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Next: Assessing the State of the Union at Pitt athletics

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