OMAHA | The road woes continued for the Sioux City Bandits here Friday night, this time at the expense of the formerly winless Omaha Beef.
Chuck Wright threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Kinnie on the final play of the game, giving the Beef a heart-stopping 43-41 Champions Indoor Football League victory over the Bandits.
Kinnie, a former University of Nebraska player, hauled in his third touchdown pass of the night as the Beef picked up its first win of the season, avenging a 62-13 loss at Sioux City in a season opener.
The Bandits, now 2-3 overall, remained winless in three road games.
Kinnie leaped high in the air to grab the game-winner, capping a wild final 1 minute, 30 seconds.
Former Briar Cliff Charger Bret Van Muyden scored on a 1-yard run with 1:37 remaining, giving the Bandits a 34-30 lead, which didn’t last for long.
Omaha’s A.J. Downs returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown, making it 37-34, but the Bandits retaliated on a 9-yard pass from Charles Dowdell to Mothershead with 28 ticks remaining. Johnny Bentley appeared to have scored on a 7-yard run but the touchdown was wiped out by an illegal formation penalty.
Still, 28 seconds proved to be just enough time for the Beef to pull it out.
Omaha took over on its own 16 with 21 seconds remaining. After a three-yard pass and false start, Brian Boro ran to the Bandits 22 and caught a 7-yard pass before the Beef called its last time out with six seconds showing on the clock.
Wright flipped a 9-yard pass to Kinnie to the three and the former Husker got to the board, stopping the clock with three seconds remaining. Omaha won the game on the next play.
Beef quarterback Wright, who split time with Tyrell Houghton, threw five touchdown passes, completing 17 of 27 for 169 yards. Kinnie had six receptions for 69 yards and Allen Daniels six grabs for 35 yards and a score. Boro hauled in the other scoring pass.
Omaha led 17-12 at the end of a see-saw first half. Sioux City’s Rahn Franklin returned the second half kickoff 54 yards for a touchdown – the Bandits’ first kick return for a score this season – but once again the lead was short-lived.
The Beef went back in front 24-19 on a 23-yard pass from Wright to Kinnie and made it 30-19 on the Wright-to-Daniels scoring strike early in the fourth quarter.
Bentley’s 1-yard plunge with nine minutes left pulled the Bandits within 30-25 but they failed on a two-point conversion try. Then, after Franklin returned an interception to the Omaha 13 one play after Bentley’s touchdown, Sioux City came up empty thanks to a costly delay of game penalty and missed 25-yard field goal.
The Bandits blocked a field goal through the end zone, which resulted in a safety with 2:59 left, but still trailed by three until the late Mothershead score.
Dowdell passed for 147 yards, completing 12 of 24, while Mothershead had seven catches for 77 yards and Bentley carried 11 times for 26 yards.
The Bandits return home to face the Salina Bombers on Saturday.