Saturday, August 10, 1974
For Immediate Release
For Further Information Contact:
Vince Casey, Direct of Press Relations


New York Stars Head Coach Babe Parilli brings his troops back to Downing Stadium for a two-game home stand this Wednesday with high hopes that the Stars can better their 3-2 record against the winless Portland Storm. But Babe knows it can be dangerous taking a team like Portland too lightly. Speaking of Dick Coury's Storm before taking the practice field, Babe warned his players against becoming overconfident against Portland. "The Storm's much better than their record shows," said Parilli. "They're tough, they're aggressive."

This aggressiveness can certainly be born out in Portland's game last week. The Storm battled an entire extra quarter to earn a 15-15 overtime tie (the WFL's first) with the Houston Texans last Wednesday night. This Wednesday night at 8:05 PM at Downing Stadium, they'll again have their hands full...with the Stars top rushing offense in the league.

Although the Stars running backs had an off night last Wednesday while the club defeated the Southern California Sun, 11-8, they still hold the top spot in the WFL rushing totals, with 938 yards for five games for a hot 187.6 yard average. The Storm has not shown a strong front line, even with their 22 years pro experience. Portland is ranked tenth in the league against the rush, allowing 156.8 yards per game. Combine New York's No. 1 rushing spot with their rankings as the second-best WFL team in total offense (332.8 yards per game - - only 8.6 yards behind 5-0 Birmingham), and the Storm - - and Star fans - - can be ready for an explosive night.

The Stars defense against the rush has been tight through the first five games. The front four has given up only two TD's on the ground, tying them for the league leadership with Houston. Storm rookie quarterback Ken Johnson will send three-year pro Marv Kendricks and 2-year veteran Rufus Ferguson against the Stars front line. The Stars must keep a double-eye on Ferguson. He's the league third leading kick-off returner, with a 27.1 yard average. So it's the Stars against the Storm. A chance for New York to improve upon its tied-with-Philadelphia second place Eastern Division standing. A chance to once again impress their home fans. But, a chance, as Babe Parilli says, "not to be taken lightly."

After Portland, the Stars remain home to take on Jim Garrett's Western Division Houston Texans on Wednesday night, August 21 at 8:05 PM at Downing Stadium.