NEW ULM, Minn. - The MLC football team jumped out to quick starts in both the first and second half and held off a late rally in a 28-23 win over Westminster Saturday.
MLC scored 14 points in the first six minutes of both the first and third quarters to get, pushing their second half lead to 28-3 with 9:38 to play in the third quarter before Westminster made things interesting with three second half touchdowns.
Jacob Unke got the Knights on the board first, scoring on a six-yard run to cap off a six-play, 53-yard drive to put MLC up 7-0.
After the defense forced a Blue Jay three-and-out, Greg Holzhueter scampered for a 50-yard scoring run on an option play down the right sideline to push MLC up 14-0.
Westminster kicked a field goal later in the first half to cut the MLC lead to 14-3, but the Knights' Andrew Stuebs intercepted a pass on the first play of the third quarter, setting MLC up in great field position that Holzhueter took advantage of with a 14-yard touchdown pass to a wide open Mark Waldschmidt to push the lead to 21-3.
The MLC defense forced another turnover on the next Blue Jay possession, as a perfect hit from Joe Lindloff forced a fumble that was recovered by the Knights' Justin Eternick at the Westminster 18 yard line.
Four plays later, Holzhueter connected on his second scoring pass of the game, this one to Scott Henrich from four yards out to push MLC ahead 28-3.
The Blue Jays made things interesting in the fourth quarter, scoring twice on drives inside the last three minutes to make the score close, but the Knights recovered the final onside kick and took a knee to preserve the win.
Holzhueter finished the day 8-11 passing for 80 yards and two touchdowns against one interception, and also ran for 87 yards on 15 carries and the one score. Aaron Voss added 111 yards rushing on 17 carries, taking advantage of an aggressive front from Westminster.
Waldschmidt and Tyler Dorn also had big days for MLC in the backfield, taking advantage of their opportunities after the Knights suffered some injuries. Dorn rushed seven times for 39 yards, while Waldschmidt caught four passes for 56 yards and a score.
Defensively, the Knights' Chuqee Fletcher led the team with eight tackles, while Lindloff had seven tackles, a forced fumble and half a sack. Paul Spaude filled in for linebacker Matt Rothe with seven tackles, while Doug Van Sice had two sacks.
With the win, MLC improved to 4-3 overall and 3-2 in the UMAC, while Westminster dropped to 3-3 and 1-2 in conference.
MLC has a bye next week, and will return to action Saturdya, October 30, when it plays Eureka at the Metrodome at 7 p.m.