Albany Empire Take Over First Place
In what was maybe their first true test, considering the opponent and the stakes, the Albany Empire passed with flying colors. With first place on the line and the 5-1 Baltimore Brigade in town, the Empire held the number one ranked offense down enough for a 61-53 win on Saturday night. Albany and Baltimore now have identical 5-2 records, but with the first tiebreak of aggregate scoring, the Empire hold first place by +5 over the Brigade.
Not only does Albany have the top ranked defense in the Arena League, it has as dangerous of a receiving corps as any. In that showdown and shootout this past weekend, Joe Hills and Malachi Jones caught 3 TDs apiece. The Capital Region continues to take notice of this immediate success by a first-year franchise. More than 8,000 people were at the Times Union Center Saturday night. All four of the home games have drawn 8,000-plus including the opener which topped 13,000 and the game that followed that with more than 10,000 fans.
Head coach Rob Keefe has a new challenge for his players now that they've achieved first place; resist complacency and stay hungry and, better yet, greedy. Keefe joined Big Board Sports Monday morning: