The Portland Steel travel to Florida this week to take on the Tampa Bay Storm for the second meeting between the two moribund franchises. Kickoff is set for Saturday evening at 5 p.m. ET at Tampa Bay’s Amalie Arena.
Portland (2-12) was the last team in the AFL to earn a victory this season, when they defeated the Storm in their first meeting of the season on June 3. The Steel won that game handily, 68-35. It was one of their three 50-point games on the season, and the only time they’ve breached the 60-point mark. Portland’s second mark in the win column came against the Jacksonville Sharks last week, a 55-53 nail-biter that ended when Jacksonville failed to convert a two-point conversion at the end of the game.
Fun Fact: A win this week would be the Steel’s first winning-streak of the season, and would be the second time the franchise had ever won back-to-back games. The first time occurred in 2014, as the Portland Thunder. Their opponents for those two games, in order? Jacksonville and Tampa Bay.
Tampa Bay (1-13) will be looking to earn its second win of the season and put an end to a six-game losing streak. Their sole triumphant moment this season came on May 29 in a stunning upset over the Arizona Rattlers (12-3), arguable the best team in the league. Tampa Bay won the fourth quarter of that game 28-8, including two touchdowns in the final minute, including a touchdown as time expired, to pull off the upset. While a victory over Portland would not be considered a shock, it would boost morale to avenge the meeting earlier in the season and provide a little momentum as playoffs loom.
The game will be broadcast live on the CBS Sports Network.