Arizona Rattlers mount furious rally but fall short against Philadelphia Soul in ArenaBowl XXIX

Posted at 6:49 PM, Aug 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-26 21:49:08-04

The Arizona Rattlers rallied from a 21-point first-half deficit but didn't do enough to earn what would have been a record sixth ArenaBowl championship.

Five turnovers, including three in the first half, proved to be the difference as the Rattlers fell to the Philadelphia Soul 56-42 Friday night in Arena Bowl XXIX at Gila River Arena.

After trailing 35-14 in the first half, Rattlers receiver Maurice Purify evened the score at 42-42 on a reception from reigning Arena Football League MVP Nick Davila in the fourth quarter. The TD catch was Purify's 11th in ArenaBowl history, a new league record.

The Soul responded with a TD on their next possession but the Rattlers blocked the extra point, giving Arizona a chance to take the lead on its next possession.

But on that possession, Davila fumbled in Philadelphia territory for the Rattler's fourth turnover of the game. A Soul TD and 2-point conversion with three minutes to play sealed the deal.

The Rattlers play their home games at Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix but had to relocate to Glendale for the ArenaBowl, as the Phoenix Mercury had a game scheduled at that arena Friday night.

The Rattlers are now 5-5 all-time in ArenaBowls but just 1-3 in ArenaBowls played at home. They won three consecutive titles from 2012-14.

The Rattlers defeated the Soul in back-to-back championship games in 2012 and '13.