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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Chicago Force routs Comets
by Ross Forman, Windy City Times
2012-04-24

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The Chicago Force home opener on April 21, was all about showing that the team's season-opening win at Kansas City a week earlier was no fluke.

They proved it with an exclamation mark.

The Force never relented against the Columbus Comets at Evanston Township High School en route to a 47-0 win in front of about 400 fans.

"We played our hearts out," said Kim Marks, named the Spin Nightclub Defensive Player of the Game. "This game was very important for us after last week—to show that we are very serious about going all the way this season.

"The defense played amazing, the best it's played in quite some time. In fact, this win was about redemption for the defense because the last time we played at home, [in the 2011 playoffs], we struggled. So, to pitch a shutout is huge."

Melissa Smith earned Spin Nightclub Offensive Player of the Game honors, thanks to a touchdown run of 16-yards, and two of 6-yards. Two games into the season, Smith has four touchdowns and has rushed for about 400 yards.

"It's so good to have Melissa back," Marks said of Smith, who retired from the Force after the 2008 championship game loss. "She's just a powerful running back."

Brandy Hatcher opened the scoring, rushing in from three yards out.

Quarterback Sami Grisafe connected with Elizabeth Strozinsky on a 37-yard pass play into the left corner of the end zone on the final play of the first half as the Force went into the locker room at halftime with a 21-0 edge.

Grisafe connected with Brandi Srda for an 8-yard completion with 4:00 remaining to play for the final points of the night.

"It's always fun when you win, especially when [the Comets] had been doing some trash-talking before the game," Marks said.

The Force travels to Indianapolis on April 28, then returns home to face the St. Louis Slam on Saturday, May 5. Game time is 5 p.m.

Israel Idonije of the Chicago Bears conducted the pre-game coin-toss and, after the game, members of the Chicago Spirit Brigade collected funds to donate to Idonije's charity foundation, IZZYz KIDz.


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