Jacksonville Sports Day

AFL: SaberCats hang on to No. 1 spot for fifth straight week

LAS VEGAS – The three-time defending ArenaBowl champions are within striking distance of the top spot in the AFL Media Poll, as the Arizona Rattlers (9-2) leapfrogged the Philadelphia Soul (10-2) to move up to No. 2 in this week’s voting.

The Rattlers picked up three first place votes after manhandling the Portland Thunder (3-8), 69-42, on the road for their fifth straight win in Week 12. J. Lewis Small Playmaker of the Week, AJ Cruz, stole the show, scoring touchdowns as a runner, receiver, and return man, in addition to starting at Jack linebacker. Arizona hosts the South Division-leading Orlando Predators (7-5) – who came in at No. 4 in this week’s Media Poll – Saturday night on CBS Sports Network. Kickoff is set for 8:00 p.m. ET.

The San Jose SaberCats (11-1) maintained the No. 1 spot in the AFL Media Poll for the fifth consecutive week, despite suffering a shocking overtime defeat at the hands of the LA KISS (2-9) in Week 12. The SaberCats will look to get back on track and once again become the unanimous No. 1 in the Poll in Week 13, when they travel to Las Vegas in hopes of completing a season sweep of the 4-7 Outlaws. Kickoff is set for 5:00 p.m. ET Sunday on ESPN3.

A 42-45 loss to the Orlando Predators in Week 12 dropped the Philadelphia Soul from second to third in the latest AFL Media Poll. Orlando, meanwhile, moved back up one spot to No. 4 in this week’s Poll after reclaiming the South Division lead with the win. While the Predators head to Phoenix for a matchup with the Arizona Rattlers, the Soul will look to get back on track when they travel across the country to square off with the LA KISS for the first time ever. Kickoff is set for 11:00 p.m. ET Saturday night on ESPN2.

The Cleveland Gladiators (7-5) snuck back into the Top 5 of the latest AFL Media Poll following a 51-34 thumping of the New Orleans VooDoo (2-10) last week. Cleveland will host the Tampa Bay Storm (5-6) in the third and final regular season meeting between the two clubs this season. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. ET Friday night on ESPN3.

The AFL Media Poll consists of voters from television, radio, and newspaper outlets who regularly cover the League in their respective markets, along with national personalities from ESPN and CBS Sports, who provide game and studio commentary about the Arena Football League.

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