Victorious via a 53-14 rout of the University of Mary was the end result for the Bulldogs football team Saturday at James Malosky Stadium. Valiant efforts on each side of the ball actuated the 39th straight win on their home field. The offense moved up and down the field, beginning on its opening drive, culminating on a nine-yard run in by Logan Lauters for six.
Chase Vogler ran another score in on the next drive that set the tone for the day. His play was nothing short of extraordinary, connecting on 19 of 24 passes for 260 yards and three touchdowns. Impressive stats for a full game, except he only played for three quarters.
"I feel like offensively we did a good job running the ball and executing in the passing game," Vogler said. "My biggest takeaway from the game was that if we come into it mentally prepared, we are a tough offense to stop."
Vogler was sharp Saturday, to say the least. The driving factor seems to be having the chemistry with receivers, translating into consistent timing, accuracy and flow of his game. Vogler hit receiver Joe Reichert for a 39-yard touchdown in the second quarter for a score, nailed Zach Zweifel a short time later from 15 yards out, and precisely hung one up 32 yards to Aaron Roth in the third quarter for another touchdown.
Equally as important to the Bulldog's success was strong defensive play. The group was adaptive and forceful, auspiciously leading them to limit Mary to 251 yards, clobbering the opposing quarterback with seven sacks and getting the ball back in the hands of the offense.
Defensive back Travis Nordhus had a career day with nine tackles, half a sack, and an interception. Defensive lineman Buma Foncham recorded two sacks on the afternoon to complement a momentous day for the Bulldogs.
With the season winding down, the Bulldogs are finding their stride.
Junior defensive end Jordan Bauman, who is sitting out the year while he battles cancer, has seen a serious change in his defense.
"Right now we are playing as good as we have all year,” said Bauman. “We are playing with confidence and that is critical to what we need to do on the field.”
If the defense can match Bauman's intensity, it will prosper.
The Dogs will continue their quest for a fifth consecutive NSIC Championship and a third NCAA Division II Championship as they face Northern State this Saturday at home to close out the regular season.
BY BILL ZIEGLER firstname.lastname@example.org