SAN ANTONIO – LA KISS kicker Kenny Spencer connected on a 35-yard field goal as time expired to give the KISS (1-0) their first win in franchise history, 41-38, over the San Antonio Talons (0-1).
The first points in KISS history came at the 10:44 mark in the first quarter, as quarterback J.J. Raterink found Donovan Morgan for a 21-yard scoring strike to put LA on top 7-0. San Antonio closed out the first quarter by answering with a touchdown of their own, as first-year starter Mitch Mustain hit Jomo Wilson for a 28-yard touchdown. Reigning AFL Kicker of the Year Garrett Lindholm drilled the extra point to even the score at seven apiece heading into the second period.
The Talons took the lead early in the second, as Mustain connected with receiver D.J. Stephens on a 14-yard touchdown to put San Antonio up 14-7. Stephens would finish the game with three touchdowns and a single-game franchise record 14 receptions. The KISS would even the score just before halftime with the first of J.J. Raterink’s three touchdown runs on the night, as the teams headed into intermission tied at 14.
Lindholm broke the tie midway through the third with a 25-yard field goal, but LA would respond with two straight touchdown drives to put the KISS ahead going into the fourth quarter. Markee White hauled in his first touchdown reception of the season, followed by Raterink’s second touchdown rush of the night.
Mustain responded with a one-yard touchdown rush of his own to start the fourth quarter, but Raterink answered right back with another touchdown run with 11:34 left to play. The Talons then went on to rally, as D.J. Stephens hauled in two more touchdown grabs to put San Antonio up 38-35. Raterink drove the KISS down the field in the final minute, enabling the KISS to tie the game at 38 with 43 seconds to play. The KISS defense then harassed Mustain into a three-and-out, culminating in the Talons intentionally kicking a field goal out of bounds. With eight seconds to play, Raterink connected with Markee White on a short pass to set up Spencer’s game-winning 35-yard field goal.
Raterink completed 17-of-34 passes for 166 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the game. He also had two interceptions on the night. Donovan Morgan led Los Angeles receivers with six catches for 65 yards and a score. Defensively, Mac linebacker Beau Bell set the tone with three sacks.
Mustain finished his first start in San Antonio with 27 completions on 46 attempts for 256 yards and four touchdowns with two interceptions. His top target was D.J. Stephens, who hauled in a franchise record 14 receptions for 140 yards and three scores. Kelvin Rodgers led the defense with seven tackles and an interception.