TACOMA, Wash. – The rain came just before kickoff and didn't let up as the University of Puget Sound's football team lost 55-14 at the hands of No. 14 Linfield. With their second touchdown, the Loggers (1-4, 0-2 NWC) surpassed last year's total for points scored.
The 2010 Loggers have posted 131 points on the board in just five weeks while the 2009 Loggers put up 127 points in their nine games. However, that wasn't near enough to overcome a high-powered Linfield offense and stingy defense.
The Wildcats (3-1, 2-0 NWC) scored the first 42 points of the game and forced six turnovers from the Loggers. All six turnovers came in the form of an interception as the Wildcats continued to abruptly end Logger drives.
The Loggers' high-pressure defense continued to force turnovers as well as Taylor Firman and Justin Erikson each came away with an interception. Erikson's INT came midway through the third quarter when he stepped in front of Cole Bixenman's pass and returned it 80 yards for a touchdown.
Erikson's return was the Loggers' first interception return for a touchdown since Oct. 20, 2007. Corey Haywood returned an interception 80 yards in the Loggers 69-31 win over Lewis & Clark.
"It was great to see our guys continuing to fight on every single play," commented head coach Jeff Thomas. "From our offense scoring on that last drive to the interception return for a touchdown and blocking multiple kicks."
Unfortunately for the Loggers, Erikson's score was their first of the game after Linfield built up a 42-0 lead. Aaron Boehme passed for two touchdowns and 220 yards, completing 10 of his 18 attempts. Boehme also rushed for 91 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Simon Larson ran for 100 yards on nine attempts and also found the end zone twice.
The Wildcats dominated the stat sheet as they gained 591 yards, including 330 yards on the ground, while the defense held the Loggers to 216 total yards.
George Ka'ai made his Logger debut, throwing for 79 yards on 13-of-19 passing. Ka'ai led the Loggers on a 17-play, 83-yard drive in the fourth quarter that ended in the Loggers only offensive touchdown of the day. Ka'ai found Thiesen Chang in the back of the end zone for a three-yard touchdown strike.
The loss is the Loggers third straight in their three-game homestand. The road beckons next weekend as the Loggers travel to Willamette next Saturday for another tough NWC matchup.