On the way to their 37th-straight home victory Saturday, the Bulldogs cruised past Minnesota State-Moorhead, 45-14, in their annual Hall of Fame Game. The Dogs rebounded from a tough loss last week in St. Cloud and delivered a crucial victory to take a step forward this season. The defense picked up its game and the increased effort translated to a distinct dynamic in the game.
“I think Moorhead played really hard,” said UMD head coach Bob Nielson. “We played great second-half defense, give them credit for how they responded.”
The defense played in a different dimension during the second half of play, shutting down Moorhead. Junior linebacker Colby Ring led the team defensively with 10 tackles. The unit tied a season-high four sacks on the day – two coming from sophomore defensive end Jacob Brusehaver.
The Bulldogs propelled past Moorhead after a 28-yard pass from quarterback Chase Vogler to receiver Zach Zweifel capped off their first drive. Vogler completed 15 of 24 passes for 213 yards.
“We had a good week of prep and felt good coming into this one,” said Vogler. “Our offense continues to improve each week and hopefully we can continue to improve throughout the season. We are pretty young at our skill positions and the more we play, the more reps they get, which in the end helps. We have a much more balanced attack.”
Freshman running back Logan Lauters had a solid performance, highlighted by a 36-yard touchdown scamper in the first quarter. Brian Lucas and Jeron Johnson walked in scores of their own during the second quarter.
The second half was a similar story, featuring Chaz Thomas stomping in for a touchdown from 18 yards out. The Bulldogs had already secured the victory and were controlling the game, so a majority of offensive starters were removed from action. Several Bulldogs continued to get involved: running back Steve Ierulli ran another score in from four yards out in the fourth quarter. This one was in the books.
Vogler can’t wait to get back on the road again this weekend, travelling to Minot, N.D., to take on Minot State.
“I love being on the road, because it kind of takes your mind off of everything else. Just you, your teammates and coaches, the only thing that matters is football.”
BY BILL ZIEGLER firstname.lastname@example.org