Tom Mix, Published October 12 2013
No. 11 Duluth tops MSU Moorhead in a shootoutMOORHEAD – Offense ruled Saturday at Alex Nemzek Stadium.
Minnesota-Duluth and Minnesota State Moorhead combined for more than 1,300 yards, but it was the No. 11-ranked Bulldogs who snatched a 69-45 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference football victory.
“I’m proud of the way our guys battled,” MSUM head coach Steve Laqua said. “They answered the bell and went toe-to-toe with a great football team. Our guys gave everything they had.”
The Dragons (1-5, 1-5 NSIC) broke a single-game school record for total yards gained with 685. Those yards came against UMD – the NSIC’s top-ranked scoring defense – which entered the game allowing just 15.0 points per game.
“We knew coming in that UMD was a tough team, and it was going to take every ounce of effort in order to beat them,” said MSUM redshirt freshman wide receiver Cory Ambrose. “I was telling the offense the entire game that they can’t stop us, and they are one of the best defenses in our conference.”
Ambrose finished with seven catches and set a school single-game record with 237 yards, including two touchdown catches of 80 yards or more.
Ambrose’s 86-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter was the second-longest TD catch in school history.
“We have a lot of weapons out there,” Ambrose said. “Adam (Jiskra) always draws a lot of the defense on him, which gives me a lot more opportunities.”
MSUM’s other big gainer was 6-foot-1 sophomore quarterback Jake Hodge, who was 31 of 45 passing for 472 yards and five touchdowns. He broke Dustin Long’s single-game school record of 440 passing yards set in 2007 against the University of Mary.
Hodge also finished with 82 yards rushing on 15 carries.
MSUM’s offense clicked enough to keep them in the game, but its defense had troubles stopping UMD.
The Bulldogs finished with a season-best 619 yards. UMD’s running game was the difference maker and featured the dual-threat backfield of junior Austin Sikorski and sophomore Logan Lauters.
Sikorski and Lauters turned in career-best days on the ground. Sikorski rushed for 212 yards and three touchdowns. Lauters added 153 yards and three touchdowns.
“Their offense was a little too much for us to handle,” Laqua said.
UMD 13 28 14 14–69
MSUM 3 28 7 7–45
UMD–Lauters 16 run (Brees kick)
MSUM–Kramer 30 field goal
UMD–Zweifel 42 pass from Bauer (Brees kick)
UMD–Sikorski 9 run (Brees kick)
MSUM–Ambrose 86 pass from Hodge (Kramer kick)
UMD–Lauters 48 run (Brees kick)
UMD–Sikorski 20 run (Brees kick)
MSUM–Medhaug 24 run (Kramer kick)
MSUM–Jiskra 7 pass from Hodge (Kramer kick)
UMD–Reierson 14 pass from Bauer (Brees kick)
MSUM–Ambrose 8- pass from Hodge (Kramer kick)
UMD–Sikorski 28 run (Brees kick)
MSUM–Medhaug 26 pass from Hodge (Kramer kick)
UMD–Fowlkes 27 pass from Bauer (Brees kick)
MSUM–Grande 20 pass from Hodge (Kramer kick)
UMD–Lauters 1 run (Brees kick)
UMD–Vandervest 91 fumble recovery (Brees kick)
TEAM STATISTICS UMD MSUM
First downs 26 30
Rushes-yards 48-441 38-213
Passing 178 472
Comp-Att-Int 13-21-0 31-45-0
Punts-Avg. 4-32.5 5-32.5
Fumbles-Lost 3-2 2-2
Penalties-Yards 10-118 7-50
Time of possession 33:04 28:45
RUSHING: UMD, Sikorski 21-212, Lauters 17-153, Bauer 9-78, Roth 1-(-2). MSUM, Schell 15-83, Hodge 15-82, Medhaug 7-37, Stone 1-11.
PASSING: UMD, Bauer 13-21-0–178. MSUM, Hodge 31-45-0–472.
RECEIVING: UMD, Zweifel 8-106, Fowlkes 2-42, Reierson 1-14, Roth 1-13. MSUM, Medhaug 10-72, Ambrose 7-237, Jiskra 7-80, Grande 5-56.
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Tom Mix at (701) 241-5562