BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – The Birmingham Stallions have yet again added another check to the win column after beating the Pittsburgh Maulers on Sunday 26-16.
Winning for Birmingham (7-0) this season has almost become routine as they remained the only undefeated team in the USFL. But Sunday’s win brought a little extra excitement to the weekend regimen.
The Stallions officially clinched a spot in the first USFL playoffs, with the Tampa Bay Bandits also losing to the New Jersey Generals the day before.
“Proud of you, proud of the way you played together” head coach Skip Holtz said while addressing the team following the victory. “We make mistakes, but we keep hitting that rock, keep lifting ourselves up and keep finding a way.”
Only the top two teams from each division are invited to Canton, Ohio to compete for the championship on July 3. And along with the Stallions, the Generals (6-1) also earned a playoff berth with their weekend win. New Jersey’s only loss of the season was at Birmingham.
And with the win over Pittsburgh (1-6), the Stallions also claimed the honor of being the first USFL team to beat every other team in the league. The eventual victory did not come without drama, however.
The Stallions found themselves trailing 10-6 at halftime to open the game in the third quarter with a fake punt that would end with a 52-yard touchdown run from Bobby Holly. Birmingham never lost their minds again.
Birmingham, as they have done throughout the season, used a balanced attack in attack and a stingy defense to smash opponents. Quarterback J’Mar Smith threw for 138 yards and running back Bo Scarbrough added 100 more on the ground.
After giving up a touchdown in the first quarter, the defense gave up just nine more points in the remaining three quarters. Linebacker Terrill Hanks led the team with 10 total tackles and defensive tackle Willie Yarbary had two sacks.
The Stallions’ quest for a perfect season continues Saturday with a game against the Breakers at Legion Field at 2 p.m.
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