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San Antonio Brahmas hand Birmingham Stallions their first UFL loss

Wade Phillips still has a little gas left in the tank.

The 76-year-old head coach (hey, he’s younger than the two top candidates for president) led the San Antonio Brahmas to an 18-9 win over the Birmingham Stallions on Saturday. It was Birmingham’s first loss in the UFL. It also ended a 15-game Stallions winning streak, dating back to a May 13, 2023 loss to the Houston Gamblers.

An interception by linebacker Teez Tabor at the one yard line with 22 seconds left clinched the game; a touchdown and a three-point conversion (from the 10) would have tied the game.

Coupled with an unexpected loss by the St. Louis Battlehawks to the previously 1-7 Arlington Renegades, the win gave the 7-2 Brahmas sole possession of first place in the XFL Conference. The conference title — and home-field for the playoff game between the Brahmas and Battlehawks — hinges on the regular-season finale in St. Louis.

The two teams are destined to play in consecutive weekends. With St. Louis boasting large crowds for its home games, and with the Battlehawks unbeaten in their home venue, a win there next Saturday will avoid a return visit the following Sunday.

Running back Anthony McFarland powered the San Antonio offense with 116 yards from scrimmage, including 82 rushing.

The Stallions face the Michigan Panthers next Saturday to end the regular season. Like the Brahmas and the Battlehawks, the same two teams will play the following weekend for a berth in the inaugural UFL Championship.