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Arlington Renegades Fall to D.C. Defenders in Week 3

ARLINGTON, TEXAS – The Arlington Renegades (0-3) failed to clinch their first win of the season on Saturday afternoon as they fell to the D.C. Defenders (2-1), 29-28, at Choctaw Stadium. The total attendance for the game was 8,411.

In a rematch of the 2023 XFL Championship Game, D.C. got on the board first with a 54-yard field goal made by K Matthew McCrane. With Arlington driving down the field, the first quarter ended at 3-0.

On the first play of the second quarter, Renegades QB Luis Perez connected with WR Tyler Vaughns for a 19-yard touchdown. After an unsuccessful two-point conversion attempt, Arlington led 6-3. Following a three-and-out forced by the Arlington defense on the next drive, the offensive unit would go on a 13-play, 85 yard scoring drive. Luis Perez tallied his second touchdown of the day, as he found WR JaVonta Payton for a 17-yard score. A successful two-point conversion attempt by QB Lindsay Scott Jr. increased the Renegades lead to 14-3.

The Defenders’ offense responded with a 70-yard scoring drive of their own, as QB Jordan Ta’Amu connected with WR Chris Rowland for a 10-yard touchdown. D.C. would fail on their following two-point conversion attempt, giving Arlington a 14-9 lead going into halftime.

D.C. opened up the second half with another long field goal by Matthew McCrane, this one being good from 58 yards out. Arlington would respond on the following drive with a field goal of their own, as K Taylor Russolino converted from 37 yards out, giving them a 17-12 advantage. The points kept coming, however, as D.C.’s Jordan Ta’Amu connected with WR Brandon Smith for a 14-yard touchdown. The Defenders were unsuccessful on their two-point conversion attempt, giving them a narrow 18-17 lead after three quarters of play.

Driving while heading into the fourth, Arlington finished off an 8-play, 80 yard drive with a rushing touchdown from QB Lindsey Scott Jr. from 13 yards out. A successful two-point conversion pass from Luis Perez to TE Sal Cannella gave the Renegades a 25-18 lead. With just under three minutes left in the game, Taylor Russolino would knock in another field goal, from 49 yards out.

On the ensuing D.C. drive, thanks in part to a solid kickoff return, the Defenders would need just five offensive plays to get into the endzone, as RB Cam’Ron Harris punched it in from a yard out. A successful two-point conversion rush from Jordan Ta’Amu cut the Arlington lead to just two, 28-26. With under a minute left, D.C. opted to go for 4th and 12 to retain possession of the ball. They would convert and later hit a 49-yard walk-off field goal, giving the Renegades their third consecutive loss to start the season.

Up next, the Renegades will hit the road for their second away game of the season. They’ll face the Houston Roughnecks (0-2) on Sunday, April 21 at 1 p.m. CT on FS1 at Rice Stadium.

• The Arlington Renegade offense posted 419 yards of total offense on Saturday, their second-highest total in team history.
• QB Luis Perez had yet another strong performance on Saturday, going 24-40 (60%) for 290 yards, two touchdowns, and zero interceptions, for a passer rating of 137.4.
• QB Lindsey Scott Jr. notched his second touchdown via the ground of the season, carrying the rock three times for 20 yards and a score. He added one pass for 10 yards.
• RB De’Veon Smith had 14 carries for 63 yards on the day, both of which were game highs.
• WR Tyler Vaughns finished with a game-high 109 receiving yards on nine catches, including his first touchdown of the season.
• WR JaVonta Payton grabbed his first touchdown of the season, as he caught two passes for 29 yards.
• DB Jamal Carter had 8 total tackles (tied for game-high) and a pass break up.
• LB Bunmi Rotimi and DT Jalen Redmond each picked up a half sack on the day.
• K Taylor Russolino went 2-2 (100%) on field goals, converting from 37 and 49 yards out. Russolino is 5-6 (83.3%) through three games this season.

Photos by Keith Higgs


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