The Pittsburgh Maulers found their first win of the season Sunday afternoon, after edging out the Philadelphia Stars on their home field!
It was a battle between defense and special teams early on in this game. The halftime score was just 12-10 in favor of the Maulers. The lone touchdown by the Stars came from a Case Cookus bomb to Corey Coleman in the opening drive of the game. After that, points were hard to come by for both teams.
The Maulers’ offense wasn’t flashy, but they continuously put points on the board. Never being forced to punt once in the first half, new kicker Chris Blewitt was able to attempt and make a field goal on all of their drives. Meanwhile, the defense forced a punt on all but two of the Stars’ drives.
TOUCHDOWN BAILEY GAITHER! 🙌— Pittsburgh Maulers (@USFLMaulers) April 30, 2023
🎥: @nbc | @peacock pic.twitter.com/FwaF7cShAK
In the third quarter, the Maulers’ offense had their first touchdown of the season. After recovering an Olive Sagapolu strip-sack of Cookus, the Pittsburgh took over at the Philadelphia 13. It was then that Troy Williams found wide receiver Bailey Gaither for an eight-yard touchdown.
ELI WALKER INT!!! 😤— Pittsburgh Maulers (@USFLMaulers) April 30, 2023
🎥: @nbc | @peacock pic.twitter.com/Gd8vB3nPo2
The Stars’ offense never recovered. Scoring just a lone field goal the rest of the way. The game was put on ice when safety Eli Walker picked off a Cookus deep ball late in the fourth quarter on a potential scoring drive.
The Maulers ended their quarterback changes this week, having Williams start and finish this game. He performed adequately going 10/18 for 96 yards and the first touchdown of the season. He also was a threat with his legs rushing for an additional 65 yards. The defense combined for three sacks and two interceptions from Walker and Reuben Foster, continuing their dominant ways. Just this time the offense took the win. A huge improvement in a crucial week three matchup.
The Maulers will look ahead to a home matchup next week with the Birmingham Stallions and hope to continue this momentum that is sure to come of this week’s first win.