SaberCats add QB Philyaw

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SaberCats add QB Philyaw

SAN JOSE, Calif. - The SaberCats today announced the addition of ten-year Arena Football League veteran quarterback Raymond Philyaw."Raymond has been one of the top quarterbacks over the last decade in the Arena Football League," said OwnerHead Coach Darren Arbet. "His level of understanding of the game and veteran presence will be an asset to our team."
Philyaw (6-0, 215, Northeast Louisiana) has played ten seasons in the AFL. Over the course of his AFL career he has amassed 26,000 yards and over 500 touchdowns, and he has the leagues best all-time touchdown-to-interception ratio at 8.6-to-1. Philyaws overall record is 63-48 and he has led four different franchises to the postseason, posting an 8-6 record in postseason play. He also spent the 2011 season as the offensive coordinator for the New Orleans VooDoo.Philyaw last played for the Bossier-Shreveport Battle Wings in 2010, where he completed 148-230 passes for 1,839 yards and 43 touchdowns to just five interceptions. In 2008 with the Cleveland Gladiators, Philyaw established a career best in completion percentage (69.5) in leading the team deep into the playoffs.After an injury-plagued 2006 season for the Kansas City Brigade, Philyaw rebounded with a career-year in 2007. That season, he posted career highs in completions (371), pass attempts (538), passing yards (4,375) and touchdowns (85), while leading the team to a 10-6 record and a playoff berth.Philyaw played two seasons with the Chicago Rush in 2004 and 2005. He orchestrated playoff runs in both years with the team and recorded a 19-11 record, combining to throw for over 6,500 yards and 119 touchdowns.Philyaw began his AFL career, with the Albany Firebirds in 2000, before the team relocated to Indiana. He took over as the teams starter in 2001 and racked up 3,518 yards and threw 68 touchdowns to only three interceptions, completing 68.3 percent of his passes. Philyaw remained the teams starting quarterback through 2003, and finished his Firebirds tenure with a 24-22 record with two playoff appearances, including a 2001 conference championship run.Philyaw began his professional playing career in the Canadian Football League where he played two seasons for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers from 1997-1998 as a member of their practice squad.The Shreveport, La. native was a standout at Northeast Louisiana (now Louisiana-Monroe) and was inducted to the universitys athletic hall of fame in 2009. Philyaw concluded his collegiate career as the schools all-time leader in passing yards (7,061) and touchdowns (52).Raymond Philyaw
Position: QB
Height: 6-0
Weight: 215 lbs.
Born: July 30, 1974 in Shreveport, La.
Hometown: Shreveport, La.
Last Team: Bossier-Shreveport Battle Wings (AFL)
College: Northeast Louisiana
AFL Experience: Ten years

Stanford tops North Carolina on PKs, advances to NCAA final

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USATSI

Stanford tops North Carolina on PKs, advances to NCAA final

HOUSTON — For the second straight season, Stanford found itself depending on penalty kicks to advance to the College Cup final.

Like last season, the Cardinal came out on top. After each team converted its first nine attempts in the tiebreaker, Amir Bashti made it 10-for-10 for Stanford. Tar Heels defender Alex Comsia then sent his try over the crossbar to end it, giving Stanford a 10-9 win.

"They had just as many good chances as us, and it could have been a 1-0 game either way," Stanford coach Jeremy Gunn said.

Stanford (14-3-5) will face Wake Forest in the College Cup final on Sunday in search of its second straight national championship.

"It's not his fault. We could have done things in the game to have his back," North Carolina defender Colton Storm said of Comsia's miss. "It could have been any of us."

"It's the nature of the game," North Carolina coach Carlos Somoano said. "Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don't. Sometimes there's moments you seize the moments, and sometimes it runs away from you."

North Carolina (14-3-4) had the two best chances of the game. Late in the second half, forward Alan Winn was denied by goalkeeper Andrew Epstein, who made a nice save with his legs.

Later, Epstein made the best save of the match in the final seconds of the second overtime on a shot from forward Tucker Hume. After gaining possession in the right side of the 18-yard box, Hume unleashed a shot that Epstein deflected wide with his legs.

"He made the plays to keep the game at 0, and he deserves credit," Somoano said.

After a flurry of corner kicks and a free kick in an attacking area, Stanford had the best opportunity to score in the first overtime on a header from Drew Skundrich, but he put if over goalkeeper James Pyle, who had six saves. Foster Langsdorf, the Stanford goal leader who scored in the team's first three tournament games and has 15 on the season, had three shots and two on goal but was unable to break the deadlock before the game went to penalty kicks.

"Any result like that is going to be tough to swallow," Storm said. "Stanford's a really good team. We each had our chances. National semifinal, it's going to be tough to swallow no matter what."

While Epstein was unable to stop any of North Carolina's penalties in the shootout, his saves late in the game enabled Stanford to continue its quest for a repeat.

"Andy's never really attracted much attention, but when you're his coach you appreciate him," Gunn said. "You can depend on him."

Stanford has won 15 of its last 18 games after starting the season with three ties and a loss. The Cardinal have yet to concede a goal through four tournament games, while North Carolina's season ends after a third consecutive tournament shutout.

After winning the first national championship in program history last season, Gunn praised his team for continuing to push forward this season.

"It's incredible," Gunn said. "You've always got to be optimistic. There's no point in being anything else. We started the year so well in January. I thought, 'These players are so hungry.'"

Rewind: Sharks fall behind early again, lose 3-2 to Ducks

Rewind: Sharks fall behind early again, lose 3-2 to Ducks

ANAHEIM – Spotting a team the first two goals is a difficult recipe for winning hockey games. That’s even truer when you’re the Sharks, and you’re having tremendous difficulty scoring more than two goals on any given night in the first place.

While the Sharks hung with Anaheim in a closely contested game at Honda Center on Friday night, the Ducks got that extra necessary score. Brent Burns and Kevin Labanc answered first period goals by Rickard Rakell and Antoine Vermette, but Hampus Lindholm’s marker with 5:38 to go in the third period was the difference.

For the fifth time in their last six, and ninth in their last 12, San Jose's scuffling offense couldn’t eclipse the two-goal plateau in a 3-2 defeat.

Coach Pete DeBoer said giving up the first two scores, like they also did on Wednesday in a similar loss against Ottawa, “is not optimal, obviously. But we battled back, and I thought the game could have gone either way. 

“I give our guys credit for battling back. … We didn't hang our head, we battled, and we're just finding a way to lose right now instead of win, which, we've been winning games like that."

For the second straight game, Sharks captain Joe Pavelski had numerous prime chances but couldn’t find a way to get one. An early third period opportunity stood out among the rest, though, when Pavelski was staring at a wide open net in a 2-2 game from close range.

Typically that’s an automatic score for Pavelski, who led the league in game-winners last season. But this time, it went five feet wide.

“Kind of rolls up, catches the blade, and it’s not even close,” Pavelski said. “Those are the moments you’ve got to cash in on. I haven’t done that.”

The Sharks’ best stretch came early in the second period, when they outskated the Ducks and peppered Jonathan Bernier while trailing, 2-1. The Ducks goalie turned them all away until Labanc squeezed one through at 8:40 after the rookie was nicely set up by linemate Logan Couture.

“He didn’t give me much room. You just want to get that off as quick as you can,” Labanc said. “Just took a quick shot, and it went in the net.”

In a game of momentum swings, though, the Ducks outplayed San Jose in the third. They took the lead when Joel Ward gave Lindholm a little too much room to pick his spot on a wrist shot from the top of the circle.

After looking like they were in good shape after two periods, Labanc thought the Sharks were “a little too confident” headed into the third.

“We stopped skating, stopped dumping the puck in, and working hard in the corners,” he said.

Pavelski bemoaned the fact that for the second straight game, a regulation loss in the final minutes, that the Sharks didn't even manage to get the point in the standings for forcing overtime despite fighting back.

"The last few games you have a chance to at least push it to the end," he said. "We're not giving up a whole lot."

The Sharks nearly did tie the game with Martin Jones pulled for an extra attacker, though. After Burns made a pair of remarkable shot blocks on Andrew Cogliano bidding for an empty netter, DeMelo and Ward each had whacks at the puck, but somehow it remained out. 
 
“A bunch of chaos, really,” is how DeMelo described it. “It was really tight. I think we were just inches away from getting the equalizer.”

Again, though, they just couldn’t find a way to get that third score.

“We were close,” DeBoer said, “but not close enough."