Phoenix, Ariz. — Ryan Vena threw six touchdown passes and rushed for another, and the Iowa Barnstormers scored 31 points in the fourth quarter to win their season finale 67-47 at Arizona on Friday night. Iowa's win was the first ever against the Rattlers, who had won the previous 7 matchups.
In the big final stanza, Iowa (7-9) blocked a field goal setting up a touchdown pass from Vena to receiver Jesse Schmidt.
On the next Arizona drive, Iowa’s J.J. Payne forced a fumble which was recovered by newcomer Chris White and returned 27 yards for a touchdown.
After an Arizona score, the Barnstormers recovered a failed onside kick, setting up a Vena rushing touchdown. Iowa then stopped the Rattlers on downs and Kicker Jeff Glas drilled his second field goal of the night from 38 yards out.
On the ensuing Arizona possession, star quarterback Nick Davila threw his only interception of the game to Jason Simpson, who returned it 48 yards for a touchdown, giving his team a 27-point lead.
Iowa had lost its previous three games, all by single-digit margins.
Davila finished with 361 yards and seven touchdown passes as receiver Rod Windsor had 15 catches and 234 yards in the loss.
The Rattlers (10-6) had won eight of their last 10 games entering the night. Their consolation is, unlike Iowa, the Rattlers are headed to the Arena Football League playoffs and will take on the number one seeded Spokane Shock next weekend. As for the Barnstormers they return to Des Moines with their fifth road victory of the season in hand.