Dave Selvig / Forum News Service, Published August 31 2013
Vikings reclaim Paint Bucket trophy with win over JamestownJAMESTOWN, N.D. – After a turnover-free opener, the University of Jamestown football team was bitten by the giveaway bug in its first home game of the season.
The Jimmies committed four turnovers in the first half, three of which stopped promising drives, and the other led to a Valley City State touchdown.
The Vikings lost one fumble, but were clean otherwise in their 2013 debut, and despite not having star running back Derek Elliott for the entire second half, pulled away for a 31-14 win at Rollie Greeno Field on Saturday.
“We’ve been preparing for this game all summer,” said hard-hitting VCSU linebacker Fontayne Fuga. “We play like we practice – hard. Jamestown has a good team, a good offense, we just wanted this one pretty bad.”
With the win, the Vikings reclaimed the Paint Bucket, which the Jimmies had taken in Valley City, N.D., last October, and won at Greeno Field for the third straight game.
First-half miscues mounted for the Jimmies as all four of their turnovers came in the opening 30 minutes.
“The coaches put a lot of responsibility on me. I like to be able to run and throw, but that means I have to take care of the ball, and I didn’t do a good enough job of that today,” said UJ quarterback Beau Eriksson, who lost three fumbles and threw an interception.
The Jimmies asked a lot of the Devils Lake, N.D., product, who showed considerable toughness in taking a physical pounding from the Vikings.
“Eriksson, now that’s a tough kid,” said VCSU coach Dennis McCulloch. “Defensively, our kids did a really good job against a good offense. I thought our coaches had a really good plan. But you have to be able to execute, and I thought our kids did a pretty good job.”
The Vikings were sharp early on offense, too. Their first drive ended in a 21-yard touchdown pass from Kurtis Walls to Colby Lum. Walls, a redshirt freshman, was making his first start.
The Jimmies drew even for the only time early in the second quarter when Steven Nelms capped a 10-play drive with a 9-yard scoring run.
But the Jimmies’ next three drives ended in a punt and two fumbles.
Meanwhile, the Vikings’ final three drives of the half resulted in 21 points. Elliott started it with a 6-yard touchdown scamper to break the 7-all tie. The Valley City High School product piled up 103 yards on 16 carries before leaving the game in the second quarter after taking a blow to the head. He returned to the sideline in the third quarter, but without pads on.
“This game, really, was a turnover deal,” McCulloch said. “We made a few plays and a couple things went our way.
“It’s a really good win for us against a quality team.”
VCSU 7 21 0 3–31
J 0 7 7 0–14
VCSU–Lum 21 pass from Walls (Cortez kick)
UJ–Nelms 9 run (Benke kick)
VCSU–Elliott 6 run (Cortez kick)
VCSU–Chappell 18 pass from Walls (Cortez kick)
VCSU–Keller 6 run (Cortez kick)
UJ–Glenn 28 pass from Eriksson (Benke kick)
VCSU–Cortez 25 FG
TEAM STATISTICS VCSU J
First downs 21 22
Rushes-yards 45-172 45-195
Passing 194 150
Comp-Att-Int 16-24-0 15-25-1
Punts-Avg. 4-37 4-35
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 4-3
Penalties-Yards 5-79 2-15
Time of possession 28:41 31:13
RUSHING: VCSU, Elliott 16-103, Keller 19-72, Goerts 3-9, Avery 2-0, Santos 3-(minus-12). J, Smith 12-68, Eriksson 18-65, Nelms 8-44, Johnson 5-8, Lynch 1-5, Glenn 1-5.
PASSING: VCSU, Santos 16-23-0 194 yards, Avery 0-1-0 0. J, Eriksson 15-25-1 150.
RECEIVING: VCSU, Gaynor 5-65, Lum 5-60, Chappell 3-40, Erby 2-24, Elliott 1-5. J, Sena 6-53, Glenn 4-53, Erbes 3-31, Roemmich 2-13.
Selvig is the sports editor of The Jamestown Sun