FREELAND, MI -- Sting Co-Owner Stuart Schweigert and some of the 2014 Sting players began their March is Reading Month campaign Monday, March 10th at Freeland Elementary School.
An assembly took place in the gymnasium from 2:45-3:20PM. Players shared real-life experiences to the kids focusing the importance of reading and how it helped to make them successful. Nearly 600 students were in attendance.
SAGINAW, MI — The Saginaw Sting were fully aware of their history with Erie.
Last year, the Explosion came into Saginaw and ended the Sting’s winning streak before downing them by a point for the Continental Indoor Football League championship.
On Sunday, March 2 the Sting made amends.
Erie marched down the field on the game’s opening possession and took a lead on a 9-yard touchdown run by quarterback Aaron Smetanka, but Saginaw answered with a CJ Tarver touchdown. And the Sting kept answering to the tune of a 45-27 victory.
“I thought, defensively, we hit a stride in the second quarter where we knew what they were going to do,” Sting coach Fred Townsend said. “So we pinned our ears back, and we’re starting to play the defense I know we can.”
Saginaw moved atop the North Division at 4-0, while Erie fell to 3-1.
The Sting trailed 13-7 going into the second quarter, but AJ McKenna threw touchdown passes to Tarver and Deshawn Hayes to take a 19-13 lead that they would not relinquish.
A 5-yard touchdown reception by Austin Coleman made it 27-13 Saginaw late in the third.
Saginaw’s defense was relentless in hounding Erie ball carriers and stopping drives. It kept the Explosion off the score board in the second and third quarters.
Taylor Genuser plunged in for a 1-yard touchdown for Erie early in the fourth quarter to draw within a touchdown at 27-20, but Saginaw closed in convincing fashion.
McKenna took the Sting on a 12-play drive that culminated in a 1-yard touchdown run by the quarterback, and Hayes rushed 13-yards for his second score of the game to make it 39-20.
Aaron Smetanka threw a 9-yard touchdown for Erie to Evan Twombly with three seconds remaining, but Saginaw threw a touchdown to Hayes as time expired to seal the win.
McKenna threw his first interception of the season, but he finished 17 of 30 passing for 147 yards and five passing touchdowns to go with his one rushing score. Hayes led all rushers with 61 yards and three total touchdowns. Tarver had four receptions for 50 yards and two touchdowns.
Spenser Smith led the defense with 16 total tackles, and LaTreze Mushatt had eight total stops. Tarver had six.
Saginaw Sting receivers Austin Coleman and CJ Tarver run 4.3 second 40-yard dashes in workout for Winnipeg Blue Bombers
MIDLAND, MI — The Saginaw Sting have the most potent offense in the Continental Indoor Football League, but they might be without some key players in the near future.
The Sting hosted the national scout for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League, Drew Morris, on Saturday, March 1 for a private workout with several of Saginaw’s standout players.
And the talent evaluator came away pleasantly surprised.
“I walked in here 30 minutes beforehand just winging it,” Morris said. “But the guys had it all set up. The organization is great.”
AJ McKenna, Justin Barnes, Nate Williams, Latrez Mushatt, Austin Coleman, Deshawn Hayes, CJ Tarver, Ameer Townes and Daryl Gooden ran the 40-yard dash, did the short shuttle and broad jump for Morris, who is staying in town to watch the Sting take on the Erie Explosion at 4 p.m. in The Dow Event Center in a rematch of last year’s championship game that the Explosion won by a point.
Morris, who has also worked with the Atlanta Falcons, will have an opportunity to work out a few players from the Explosion, but he came away thoroughly impressed with what he saw from Saginaw.
“I worked out a hundred guys in a combine I did two days ago in Washington D.C.,” Morris said. “And they didn’t have anyone who ran as well as three or four of the guys here.”
He couldn’t name names for the worry of players catching the eye of other CFL teams, but Coleman ran the 40-yard dash in 4.33 seconds, while Tarver turned in a time of 4.37 seconds. Hayes was just behind with a 4.40 time.
Those three players, along with Gooden, have combined to total 19 touchdowns for the Sting, while McKenna has thrown for 558 yards with 15 touchdowns and zero interceptions.
For a comparison, Detroit Lions All-Pro wide receiver Calvin Johnson ran the 40-yard dash in 4.35 seconds, and Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was clocked at 4.40.
According to Morris, teams throughout the CFL covet speed due to the bigger field up North. In the United States, fields are 53 1/3 yards wide and 100 yards long with 10-yard end zones. In Canada, the fields are 65 yards wide and 110 yards long with 20-yard end zones.
“We’re hoping to find a few guys who can make our team and start for us,” Morris said.
Players who make the cut and receive an invitation to mini-camp will be flown down to Florida in mid-April to work with Blue Bombers coaches. A good performance there would receive an invitation to training camp for the regular season at the end of May or early June.
“We don’t care if someone came from a (Division III) school or Alabama,” Morris said. “We’re looking for guys who can run and play football.”
Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League holding private workout for Saginaw Sting players
SAGINAW, MI — The Saginaw Sting have gone to great lengths to find talented players, but they’re hoping they don’t stay for too long.
The Sting are hosting Drew Morris, the national scout for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League, on Saturday, March 1 for a private workout.
Morris is scheduled to work out several Saginaw players, including wide receivers CJ Tarver and Austin Coleman, quarterback AJ McKenna, running back Deshawn Hayes, linebacker Spenser Smith and defensive lineman Justin Barnes.
He’s also working out a few Erie Explosion players prior to their game against Saginaw on Sunday.
Players will run a 40-yard dash, short shuttle, broad jump and run routes, in addition to individual drills.
SAGINAW, MI – In conjunction with their major sponsorship of the Continental Indoor Football League’s local team, The Saginaw Sting, Draper Automotive will give 4 people the chance to win a NEW 2014 Chevrolet Sonic LS during the last regular Sting home game on April 26, 2014.
Registration takes place at the Draper Auto table at every home game tailgate party at The Dow Event Center. There you can register for that games half-time “kick to win” contest! If your name is drawn and you kick a field goal during that contest, you will come back to the last home game and compete with 3 others for a chance to win the car! A FREE car! Not a lease! You keep it! You own it!
SAGINAW, MI — The Saginaw Sting’s potent offense still hasn’t met its match three weeks into the season, and the Detroit Thunder turned out to be its most recent victim.
DeShawn Hayes scored two first-quarter touchdowns, and Latreze Mushatt returned an interception for a touchdown for a quick 21-0 lead that Saginaw rode to a 72-16 victory.
The Sting improved to 3-0 on the season, while Detroit fell to 0-3.
After falling in the early hole, Detroit answered with two touchdowns and a safety sack of Sting quarterback AJ McKenna to draw within 21-16, but Saginaw scored the remaining 51 points unanswered.
McKenna hooked up with Hayes on their second receiving touchdown of the game from 6 yards out to push their lead to 28-16 in the second, and Hayes added his fourth touchdown of the game in the third quarter with a 12-yard run.
Saginaw’s defense got back into the action with a safety and an interception returned for a touchdown by DJ Marchiando that sandwiched a McKenna 2-yard plunge for a 51-16 lead early in the fourth.
McKenna capped off the performance with touchdown passes to CJ Tarver and Austin Coleman to close out the win.
Hayes tied for a game-high with 44 rushing yards and four total touchdowns, while McKenna finished 20 of 30 passing for 184 yards and four total touchdowns. Coleman had four receptions for 48 yards and a score.
Spencer Smith paced the defense with 10 total tackles and a sack, while Omari Humes had five total tackles and a sack.
SAGINAW, MI — The Saginaw Sting made significant upgrades in the talent department during the offseason.
But they still have to work out some kinks.
Saginaw welcomed Port Huron to The Dow Event Center on Sunday, Feb. 16 for their home opener, and the Sting saw the Patriots score 21 straight points in the second half to take a 44-40 lead before Saginaw closed in convincing fashion with 30 straight unanswered points for a 70-44 win.
“It just goes to show you the talent in this league,” Saginaw coach Fred Townsend said. “The talent is not just here with the Sting. It’s in the whole league, and you better be ready to go every week.”
It was the first North Division game for both teams. Saginaw improved to 2-0 overall, while Port Huron fell to 1-1.
The Sting seemed to be in control after scoring to open the second half and take a 40-23 lead, but the Patriots came roaring back with touchdowns by Arthur Jimmerson and Eric Evans. And they took a 44-40 lead 30 seconds into the fourth quarter on a 28-yard touchdown pass from Michael Akrawi to Jose Morris.
That touchdown seemed to wake up the Sting who answered three players later with a 29-yard touchdown pass from AJ McKenna to DeShawn Hayes. Hayes took the screen pass up the left sideline stop-juked one defender and shoulder faked another to hit the sideline for the score.
And Saginaw’s defense was lockdown the rest of the game.
“As the game went on, we made some great adjustments to make some plays defensively,” Townsend said.
“And once we got rhythm going (on offense) the ball was coming out cleaner, receivers could catch it in stride and run.”
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