(EDINA, MN) The St. Louis SLAM women’s tackle football franchise fell to 1-1 following Saturday’s 41-6 road loss to the Minnesota Vixen.
The Women’s Football Alliance Pro match-up saw Minnesota running back Grace Cooper’s four touchdown performance boost the Vixen triumph, their first historically over the SLAM, that kept their season unblemished (2-0).
In the game’s opening possession, the Vixen were driving on their home turf but the effort was halted by SLAM defensive back Keyonna Smith’s interception three minutes into the game.
St. Louis silenced the crowd three plays deep and opened the scoring with quarterback Jaime Gaal’s 81-yard touchdown pass to Danielle Price at the 11:07 mark that made the score 6-0.
The Vixen countered with a seven-play, 51-yard drive that featured Cooper, who only played one down before leaving with an injury in last weekend’s win over Iowa. Cooper’s 34-yard touchdown tied the score and Minnesota flipped it for a 7-6 edge with 6:42 left in the quarter.
Over the next two possessions, both defenses made impressive stops. As the SLAM were marching midway through the quarter, Gaal’s attemtped pass was batted and subsequently intercepted by Vixen defensive tackle Jodie Williams, who barreled to the St. Louis 24.
Even with excellent field position, Minnesota fared no better on their next drive and turned the ball over on downs thanks to SLAM defensive back Jasmine Yandell’s sack with 1:50 left in the quarter.
St. Louis couldn’t muster much offensively on the next drive and punted the ball from their own 27. Unfortunately, the punt sailed directly straight up into the air and fell for zero net gain.
This gave Minnesota excellent field position and it did not take long for them to capitalize. Cooper’s 21-yard touchdown run with :08 left in the quarter pushed the score to 13-6 and the differential became eight following the successful PAT kick.
The second quarter was scoreless as neither squad built any offensive traction and the Vixen maintained their 14-6 lead at halftime.
Perhaps keeping the SLAM silent on the scoreboard since their first possession helped Minnesota boost its confidence heading in the third quarter.
A ten-play, 58-yard drive that was punctuated by Cooper third touchdown of the night, a seven-yard scramble with 5:16 left in the quarter, and the successful kick added afterwards extended the score to 21-6.
The Vixen sealed victory thirty seconds into the fourth quarter as Cooper’s 31-yard run capped off an outstanding four-score effort by the veteran running back and pushed the lead to 27-6.
The Vixen continued to silence the SLAM offense and added an extra pair of Erin Kelley touchdown passes to conclude the eye-opening 41-6 victory.
The SLAM is idle next weekend and will launch the first of three straight home games at St. Mary’s High School on April 30 against Derby City Dynamite.
By trade, he is a six-time, regional Emmy Award-winning news videographer/editor for KTVI/KPLR-TV. By hobby, he is an announcer and digital content producer for St. Louis-based Arch Rival Roller Derby. Also a webcast announcer for post-season roller derby tournaments on wftda.tv. Yep, this Illinoisan primarily writes about derby, covering Arch Rival, the St. Chux Derby Chix and the STL GateKeepers men's league. He also writes about St. Louis SLAM Women's Football, St. Louis Lions women's soccer and other sports topics.