Blaze reach top 5 in latest writers poll

Blaze reach top 5 in latest writers poll



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A resounding 60-7 victory over the New York Dragons allowed the Dallas Desperados to solidify their hold on the top spot of the Schutt Sports Top 12 Poll, as voted on by members of the Arena Football League Writers Association (AFLWA).

Dallas (1-0), which hosts the Tampa Bay Storm (0-1), received 15 first-place votes and 212 points to easily maintain No. 1. The other three first-place votes went to the No. 2 San Jose SaberCats (1-0), No. 4 Georgia Force (1-0) and No. 7 Kansas City Brigade (1-0).

San Jose moved up two places after defeating the Los Angeles Avengers 66-58. The SaberCats visit the Chicago Rush (0-1), which moved down eight spots into a tie for No. 11 after losing 54-41 to Kansas City.

The Orlando Predators (1-0) advanced two spots to No. 3 after beating Tampa Bay 52-27. Orlando is home against Los Angeles (0-1).

Georgia, which hosts the No. 6 Austin Wranglers (1-0), also moved up two places thanks to its 69-65 victory over the Arizona Rattlers. Austin advanced five spots after defeating the Las Vegas Gladiators 57-36.

The Utah Blaze (1-0) went up four slots to No. 5 after edging the New Orleans VooDoo 63-61. Utah is at Arizona (0-1).

Kansas City, which moved into the rankings, travels to the No. 8 Colorado Crush (0-1), which fell six spots after a 44-42 loss to the Grand Rapids Rampage.

Despite not playing, the Philadelphia Soul (0-0) dropped two places to No. 9. Philadelphia is at the Nashville Kats (0-1.

The Columbus Destroyers (1-0), which entered the poll at No. 10 after defeating Nashville 58-56, plays at New Orleans (0-1).

Grand Rapids (1-0) shares the No. 11 spot with Chicago after moving into the poll. The Rampage hosts Las Vegas (0-1).

Schutt Sports, the sports gear company with a reputation for innovation, is sponsoring this season's Top 12 Poll. Its website is shuttsports.com.

The AFLWA, founded at the start of the 2004 season, is a national organization made up of media members who cover the Arena Football League. Mark Anderson of the Las Vegas Review-Journal is the AFLWA's founder and executive director. The website is www.aflwa.com.

1. Dallas Desperados 1-0 (15) 212 2. San Jose SaberCats 1-0 (1) 179 3. Orlando Predators 1-0 173 4. Georgia Force 1-0 (1) 162 5. Utah Blaze 1-0 121 6. Austin Wranglers 1-0 106 7. Kansas City Brigade 1-0 (1) 78 8. Colorado Crush 0-1 75 9. Philadelphia Soul 0-0 71 10. Columbus Destroyers 1-0 61 T11. Chicago Rush 0-1 50 T11. Grand Rapids Rampage 1-0 50

Others receiving votes: New Orleans VooDoo 25, Arizona Rattlers 20, Nashville Kats 10, Los Angeles Avengers 6, New York Dragons 3, Tampa Bay Storm 2.

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