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Denver 23 at Tampa Bay 26
1983 Week 17 - Monday, June 27, 1983
Denver Gold(7-9) at Tampa Bay Bandits(10-6)(-6.5)
Attendance: 46,128, TV: ESPN
TAMPA(UPI) - Eric Truvillion, who leads the United States Football League in touchdown receptions, ran his total to 14 with a 44-yard catch from Tampa Bay quarterback Jimmy Jordan.
The touchdown Monday night gave the Bandits a come-from-behind 26-23 victory over the Denver Gold and kept alive Tampa Bay's hopes of a playoff spot.
The Bandits, the Chicago Blitz and the Michigan Panthers are tied in the Central Division with 11-6 records.
In order for the Bandits to make the playoffs, they must win next week at Birmingham(8-9), and have either Chicago lose to the 9-8 Oakland Invaders or Michigan lose to the 4-13 Arizona Wranglers.
Truvillion's winning touchdown came on the second play after the game was resumed following a 50-minute delay because of lightning during a severe thunderstorm.
The teams went to their locker rooms with 8:31 left to play to sit out the storm.
"During the break, we talked about that long pass," said Tampa Coach Steve Spurrier.
Truvillion was behind the defensive back and went in untouched to give the Bandits a one-point lead. They stretched it to three points when Greg Boone ran for a two-point conversion.
It was the second two-point conversion of the night for the Bandits - linebacker Mike Goedecker ran for two points from a kicking formation after Tampa's first touchdown.
The Bandit's first touchdown came on a 23-yard pass interception by nose guard Fred Nordgren in the first period when Denver quarterback Craig Penrose - operating out of a shotgun formation - threw a short pass over the line of scrimmage and right into Nordgren's hands.
Later in the first period, Gary Anderson boosted Tampa's lead to 15-0 on a 3-yard run.
But then Denver got its offense going and ran off 16 points in the second period and seven in the third before Tampa could get back into the game.
1983 USFL Regular Season 1983 Week 17 Monday, June 27, 1983 Denver Gold 23 @ Tampa Bay Bandits 26 Stadium : Tampa Stadium, Tampa, FL. Attendance: 30,396 Denver Tampa Bay First Downs 16 16 Rushes - Yards 33-179 29-88 Passing Yards 84 195 Return Yards 105 116 Passes 15-25-3 16-25-3 Sacks - Yards Lost 3-25 1-8 Punts - Avg. 4-44.8 3-45.0 Fumbles-Lost 6-2 1-0 Penalties-Yards 9-79 5-55 Time of Possession 35:37 24:23 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Total Denver 0 16 0 7 - 23 Tampa Bay 15 0 0 11 - 26 1st Quarter Scoring Tampa Bay Bandits - Nordgren 23 yd. Interception Return for TD ( Goedeker Run ). Tampa Bay Bandits - Anderson 2 yd. Run ( Andrusyshyn Kick ). 2nd Quarter Scoring Denver Gold - Niziolek 2 yd. Pass from Penrose ( Speelman Kick ). Denver Gold - Sydney 1 yd. Run ( Pass Failed ). Denver Gold - 41 yd. Field Goal by Speelman. 3rd Quarter Scoring Denver Gold - Sydney 2 yd. Run ( Speelman Kick ). 4th Quarter Scoring Tampa Bay Bandits - 47 yd. Field Goal by Andrusyshyn. Tampa Bay Bandits - Truvillion 44 yd. Pass from Jordan ( Boone Run ). INDIVIDUAL Statistics Rushing Denver Gold - V. White 13-72, Canada 8-24, Sydney 6-27, Matthews 2-9 Choate 1-31, James 1-17, Penrose 1-9, Dirden 1 for minus 10 yds. Tampa Bay Bandits - Anderson 15-48, Platt 8-29, Boone 4-9, Reaves 2-2. Passing Denver Gold - Penrose 7-11-1-28, Mortensen 8-14-2-81. Tampa Bay Bandits - Reaves 7-13-2-72, Jordan 9-12-1-131. Receiving Denver Gold - Canada 6-56, Dirden 2-23, V. White 2-10, Sydney 1-8 Williams 1-7, Matthews 1-3, Niziolek 1-2. Tampa Bay Bandits - Anderson 5-36, Truvillion 3-94, Platt 3-17, Gilbert 2-32, Boone 1-14, Buggs 1-7, Gillespie 1-3. Kickoff Returns Denver Gold - Stamper 2-28, Ford 1-22, Sydney 1-11. Tampa Bay Bandits - Bailey 3-61. Punt Returns Denver Gold - Martin 1-13. Tampa Bay Bandits - Bailey 3-32. Punting Denver Gold - Gortz 4-44.8 Yd. Avg. Tampa Bay Bandits - Andrusyshyn 3-45.0 Yd. Avg. Field Goals Denver Gold - Speelman 1 of 1. Tampa Bay Bandits - Andrusyshyn 1 of 2. Interceptions Denver Gold - Martin 3-24, Sullivan ?-?. Tampa Bay Bandits - Nordgren 1-23, George 2-0. Sacks Denver Gold - Short 1-8. Tampa Bay Bandits - Times 1-12, Nordgren 1-9, Washington 1-4.
Archived news report
Supplemental information courtesy of Chris Blackburn