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Recap: Houston Roughnecks 32, Seattle Dragons 23

HOUSTON ROUGHNECKS 32, SEATTLE DRAGONS 23

Week 5: NY 30, DAL 12 | DC 15, STL 9 | LA 41, TB 34

XFL Statement Regarding Seattle-Houston Game

HOUSTON -- The Seattle Dragons (1-4) rolled out of the opening kickoff with an early 14-0 lead, but the Houston Roughnecks (5-0) stormed back to remain undefeated on the back of a 32-23 victory Saturday at TDECU Stadium.

P.J. Walker unleashed 351 yards and three passing touchdowns while completing a whopping 71 percent of his passes. One key was reconnecting with Cam Phillips, who had just one catch in Week 4 but, in Week 5, was targeted 13 times and caught 10 for 122 yards and two touchdowns.

Houston tailback James Butler also enjoyed his second two-touchdown game of the year.

Seattle went with B.J. Daniels under center following his Week 4 breakthrough; he ran for two touchdowns and nearly helped guide the Dragons to an upset. 

The Dragons were leading the takeaway battle 3-0 before Daniels lost a fumble late in the fourth quarter that was recovered by Houston linebacker DeMarquis Gates -- the second straight week he had an eventual game-clinching takeaway.

WATCH THESE PLAYS

Houston's hybrid playmaker Nick Holley used his juke boost to finish this 50-yard catch-and-sprint for a touchdown to get Houston back in the thick of this one.

Vital assist to Phillips with that block near the end. That'll get him a sticker.

The Walker-Phillips bromance was on full display again. On the first scoring link-up, Phillips wrestled for control while he boxed out in the end zone:

The Dragons' run game had a good fight going for much of the first half, including this touchdown run on a sparkling cutback from Trey Williams:

ROUGHNECKS COMMENT ON WIN

"That's the way the football game is. There is going to be some times where you’re gonna have to fight through the adversity and make some plays, which we did. We just gotta keep fighting, playing together and playing until the last play."

Roughnecks head coach June Jones, on Houston's early deficit and comeback effort

"Just taking the practice over to the games. We have been doing this since December, trusting in the process, trusting in coach June’s offense.”

Roughnecks WR Cam Phillips, on the offense's success this season

STATS OF THE GAME

PEAK PERFORMANCES

DRAGONS

Though he didn't challenge downfield too often (5.2 yards per attempt), Daniels has given Seattle much more flexibility and variance on offense -- if nothing else, for the ability to sustain drives with his scrambling ability. That helped them chew up drives and keep the Roughnecks offense off the field early, nearly converting the blueprint of how to defeat the league's top squad.

Safety Jordan Martin sprinted all over the field with eight tackles (seven solo) and one of the interceptions of Walker.

ROUGHNECKS

After his quiet Week 4, Phillipa stormed back in this one, frequently finding holes in Seattle's two-deep-safeties coverage and broke off a game-changing play late in the third quarter.

Also, with WR Sammie Coates inactive, Sam Mobley saw more attention from Walker in the form of nine targets. He snared six for 95 yards.

Former NFL running back Andre Williams also helped generate more punch on the ground as a complement to Butler

Dragons discuss defeat

"For the most part, we held on the ball very well. We were stingy with the ball while passing it down the field. I'm sick about several drives, and for us, it made the difference in the games."

Dragons head coach Jim Zorn

"We just keep building. We can’t fold. Times like this are where good teams rise. As you can see, all of our games have been close. We’re not getting blown out of the stadium. All of our games are one and one-half possessions. We’ve just got to stick together. Both sides played hard. We’ve just got to stick together and make our corrections."

Dragons S Jordan Martin

DRAGONS-ROUGHNECKS PHOTOS

Up Next: Week 6

  • The Roughnecks hit the road again to face the New York Guardians (Saturday, March 14, at 2 p.m. ET on ABC).
  • Seattle will head back to CenturyLink Field to host the Los Angeles Wildcats in a key battle for the West's playoff picture (Sunday, March 15, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2.)

Week 5: NY 30, DAL 12 | DC 15, STL 9 | LA 41, TB 34