September 10, 2011

Turnovers Prove Costly, Gustavus Falls 26-21 To #14 Wartburg

More news about: Gustavus Adolphus

The Gustavus football team battled to the end yet couldn't find a way to get into the end zone late in the game, as #14 Wartburg College defeated the Gusties 26-21 on Saturday night in Waverly, Iowa.  Wartburg improves to 2-0 with the win, while Gustavus falls to 0-1 to start the year.

"Turnovers can get a team down, and I've seen teams quit in situations like tonight.  Our guys didn't" said Head Coach Peter Haugen.  "I'm really proud of the way the guys battled.  You can fix mistakes but you can't fix a kid's heart, and we showed great heart as a team tonight."

Coach Haugen gets set to lead the Gusties onto the field in the season opener against Wartburg.

Turnovers, and especially, points off turnovers proved to be the difference in the opener.  The Knights turned three Gustavus give-aways – two fumbles and one blocked punt – into 16 points.

"I think we understand that you can't make those kinds of mistakes and expect to beat a team like Wartburg," said Haugen.

It was all Gustavus at the start of the game.  The defense epitomized the bend-don't-break philosophy by keeping the Knights off the scoreboard after a missed field goal that finished a 10 play 58-yard drive.  Following a pair of three-and-outs by Gustavus then Wartburg, the Gusties took over on their own 14-yard-line.  On second down and seven, senior Elliott Herdina (Blooming Prairie, Minn), who returned to the lineup after missing seven games due to injury last season, turned in Gustavus' longest play of the night, catching a slip screen, bouncing it outside and using a series of downfield blocks to go 68 yards down to the Wartburg 15-yard-line.  Herdina would finish the game with three catches for 80 yards.

Three plays later, Logan Becker (Easton, Minn.) scampered into the end zone untouched from five yards out on a well-sold inside fake for the opening score of the game.  Tom Huepenbecker's (Middleton, Minn.) extra point brought the score to 7-0, as the touchdown capped off a five-play 86-yard drive.

Elliot Herdina made his return to the lineup felt early in the game, taking a simple pitch-and-catch and turning it into a 68-yard scamper to set up a score.

Following another three-and-out by the Wartburg offense, the Gustie offense took the ball down and scored a touchdown to finish a nine-play 76-yard drive.  Wide receiver Andre Creighton (St. Paul, Minn.) had 40-yard catch on a deep post to set up the score on the drive.  Newcomer Phillip Butler (St. Paul, Minn.) scored the first touchdown of his collegiate career on a three-yard plunge to give the Gusties a 14-0 lead following Huepenbecker's extra point.

The momentum took a shift near the 8:00 minute mark of the second quarter when the Gusties fumbled deep in their own territory, giving the struggling Wartburg offense the ball on the 26-yard-line going in.  Two plays later, Dan Stiefel (Sterling Heights, Mich.) hooked up with Curt Hruska (New Hampton, Iowa) on 25-yard touchdown pass that cut the lead to 14-10.

Wartburg took its first lead of the game at 17-14 on its next possession.  Logan Ruffridge picked up a key block from his quarterback Steifel to score on a reverse from the 15-yard-line for the go-ahead touchdown with 1:28 left in the half.

The two teams would head into their respective locker rooms with the scoreboard reading 17-14 in favor of Wartburg.

Following an exchange of three-and-outs to start the second half, it was Gustavus' special teams that tilted the momentum back to the Gustie sideline.  Senior Brad Kruckeberg (Ellendale, Minn.) hit a lane and made a couple Knights miss for a 30-yard return that put the offense in Wartburg territory.  A pass interference penalty on the next play set Phillip Butler up for his second touchdown of the day, this one a 35-yarder in which he burst through the line, making a defender miss on the near sideline before finding a seam and cutting across the field for the touchdown.  Butler finished the game with 70 yards on 10 carries (7.0 ypr).

Following a Wartburg punt on the ensuing possession came a disastrous series of events for the Gusties that proved to be the difference in the game.  After picking up a first down on an 11-yard run, Becker lost control of the football as he was brought down to the turf, giving the Knights excellent field position at the Gustavus 37-yard-line.  Despite having first and goal at the seven-yard-line, the Gustie defense was able to rise to challenge and hold the Knights to just a field goal, holding on to the lead by one point at 21-20.

"I'm really proud of our defense.  They had their backs against the wall several times and did a tremendous job stepping up to the challenge.  Coach Shea put together a great plan and the guys executed it very well," commented coach Haugen on the play of the defense in the game.

It was the 10th anniversary of Walston-Hoover Stadium on the campus of Wartburg College. It was Gustavus' first night game since the 2002 season.

Now with momentum back on their side, the Knights forced a three-and-out and elected to bring the house on the Gustavus punt.  It paid off.  David Hoehne (Elma, Iowa) broke through the personal protectors, getting a hand on the Huepenbecker punt and Wartburg recovered the block on the eight-yard-line going in.  Facing third-and-goal, Steifel connected with Hruska for the second time in the game, this time on a corner route that put the Knights on top 26-21.

Hruska was Steifel's top target of the night, leading all receivers with six catches for 105 yards and two touchdowns.  Steifel was 18-for-33 for 253 yards and two touchdowns on the night.  Despite being hurried on several occasions, the Gustie pass pressure was unable to sack the senior for the entirety of the contest.

The Hruska touchdown turned out to be the dagger, as the Gustavus offense was unable to move the ball past mid-field in its final three possessions.

The Gusties picked up 14 first downs and 321 yards, 176 rushing and 145 passing, of total offense in the game.   Wartburg picked up 17 first downs and gained 369 yards of total offense, 116 on the ground and 253 through the air.

Logan Becker was 10-for-15 for 145 yards through the air, yet was sacked four times and finished with 24 yards rushing.  Jeffrey Dubose (St. Paul, Minn.) was Gustavus' leading ball carrier with 78 yards on 12 carries for an average of 6.5 yards per rush.

Defensively, the Gusties were led by Brad Kruckeberg and Todd Kremmin (Cottage Grove, Minn.).  Kruckeberg had 8.5 tackles to lead the team, while Kremmin, who provided a constant stream of pressure off the edge, recorded eight, seven of which were solo.

The Gustavus football team will return to Hollingsworth Field next Saturday, Sept. 17 for its home opener against Mayville State University at 1:00 p.m.  Mayville State enters with a 2-1 record after picking up wins against Robert Morris College and Trinity Bible College.

"Our seniors did a nice job leading us tonight and I know that they will get the team ready for Mayville next week," said Haugen.

Box Score

Photo Gallery

comments powered by Disqus
Sep. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Christopher Newport 31, at N.C. Wesleyan 28
Box Score
Sep. 19: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Framingham State at Fitchburg State
Live Stats Video
Sep. 20: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
RPI at Castleton State
Preview Live Stats Video Tickets
12:00 PM
Maine Maritime at Massachusetts Maritime
Preview Live Stats Live Stats Video
12:00 PM
Gallaudet at Rochester
Live Stats Video Audio
12:00 PM
Alfred State at Husson
Preview Live Stats Video
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Randolph-Macon
Live Stats Video Audio
12:00 PM
Moravian at Johns Hopkins
Live Stats Video Audio
12:00 PM
Frostburg State at Utica
Live Stats Video Audio
12:00 PM
Alfred at Buffalo State
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Newport News Apprentice at Catholic
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Becker at Nichols
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Wesleyan at Middlebury
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Worcester State
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Hamilton at Tufts
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Bates at Amherst
Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Colby at Trinity (Conn.)
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Salve Regina at William Paterson
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Stevenson
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Allegheny at Hiram
Live Stats Live Stats Video Video
1:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Merchant Marine
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Case Western Reserve at St. Vincent
Preview Video
1:00 PM
Thomas More at Thiel
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Ursinus at Franklin and Marshall
Preview Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Endicott at Kean
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Coast Guard at Hampden-Sydney
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Averett
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Albright at Widener
Live Stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Hobart at Curry
Live Stats Live Stats Video Audio Audio
1:00 PM
LaGrange at Greensboro
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Dickinson
Video Audio
1:00 PM
Rowan at Wesley
Live Stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Morrisville State at St. Lawrence
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
FDU-Florham at Misericordia
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Juniata at Gettysburg
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Lincoln (Pa.) at Montclair State
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Wabash at Denison
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Bethany at Westminster (Pa.)
1:00 PM
Mount Ida at Springfield
Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Hartwick at Ithaca
Live Stats
1:00 PM
WPI at Norwich
Live Stats Live Stats Video
1:00 PM
Iowa Wesleyan at Minnesota-Morris
1:00 PM
Huntingdon at Methodist
Video Video
1:30 PM
Ohio Northern at Baldwin Wallace
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
1:30 PM
Wilmington at Capital
Preview Live Stats Video
1:30 PM
Franklin at Anderson
Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Carnegie Mellon at Washington and Jefferson
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Heidelberg at John Carroll
Preview Live Stats Video Video Audio Audio
1:30 PM
King's at Lycoming
Live Stats Video Audio
1:30 PM
Geneva at Waynesburg
1:30 PM
Mount Union at Muskingum
Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Mount St. Joseph at Defiance
Live Stats Video
1:30 PM
Earlham at Manchester
Live Stats Live Stats Video Audio
2:00 PM
Bowdoin at Williams
Video
2:00 PM
Muhlenberg at McDaniel
Preview Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at TCNJ
Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Marietta at Otterbein
Audio
2:00 PM
Hope at Lakeland
Live Stats Video Audio
2:00 PM
Olivet at Aurora
Live Stats Video Audio
2:00 PM
Trine at Rockford
Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Albion at Concordia (Wis.)
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
North Park at Washington U.
Preview Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Kalamazoo at Wisconsin Lutheran
Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
UW-Eau Claire at Wheaton (Ill.)
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Tickets
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at St. John's
Live Stats Video Audio Audio
2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Bethel
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Augsburg at Carleton
Live Stats Video Audio Audio
2:00 PM
Hamline at Gustavus Adolphus
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Stetson at Birmingham-Southern
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Trinity (Texas) at Sul Ross State
Audio
2:00 PM
Occidental at Austin
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Howard Payne
Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Central
2:00 PM
Grinnell at Luther
Video
2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at Coe
Audio
2:00 PM
Eureka at Greenville
2:00 PM
Westminster (Mo.) at MacMurray
2:00 PM
Loras at Augustana
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at Louisiana College
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
Illinois Wesleyan at Simpson
Live Stats Video
2:30 PM
Rose-Hulman at Hanover
Preview Live Stats Video
3:00 PM
Plymouth State at Western Connecticut
Live Stats
3:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Wayland Baptist
Live Stats Video Audio
3:00 PM
Lewis and Clark at Whittier
Live Stats Video
3:00 PM
Willamette at Cal Lutheran
Live Stats
3:30 PM
Alma at Concordia-Chicago
Live Stats Video
3:30 PM
Carroll at Lake Forest
Live Stats Video
3:30 PM
Whitworth at La Verne
Live Stats Video Audio
4:00 PM
Westfield State at Mass-Dartmouth
Live Stats Video
4:00 PM
Crown at St. Scholastica
Live Stats Live Stats Video
6:00 PM
DePauw at Wittenberg
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
6:00 PM
St. John Fisher at Brockport State
Audio Tickets
6:00 PM
UW-River Falls at South Dakota Mines
7:00 PM
Guilford at Southern Virginia
@ Salem Stadium
Live Stats Live Stats Video
7:00 PM
Wooster at Oberlin
Live Stats Video Audio
7:00 PM
Ferrum at Shenandoah
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
7:00 PM
Centre at Washington and Lee
Live Stats Video Audio
7:00 PM
Kenyon at Ohio Wesleyan
7:00 PM
Wilkes at Delaware Valley
Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Pacific at Dubuque
Live Stats Video Audio
7:00 PM
UW-Platteville at North Central (Ill.)
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
7:00 PM
Chicago at Elmhurst
Preview Live Stats Video
7:00 PM
Mary Hardin-Baylor at UW-La Crosse
7:00 PM
UW-Oshkosh at South Dakota State
Live Stats Video Audio
7:30 PM
Adrian at Benedictine
Live Stats Video Audio
8:00 PM
UW-Stout at Wartburg
Audio
8:00 PM
Martin Luther at Northwestern (Minn.)
Live Stats Video
8:00 PM
Southwestern at East Texas Baptist
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
10:00 PM
Rhodes at Pomona-Pitzer
Preview Live Stats Video
10:00 PM
Linfield at Redlands
Live Stats Video Audio Audio
Sep. 20: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
St. John Fisher at Brockport State
Audio Tickets
6:00 PM
DePauw at Wittenberg
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
8:00 PM
UW-Stout at Wartburg
Audio
7:00 PM
UW-Oshkosh at South Dakota State
Live Stats Video Audio
7:00 PM
UW-Platteville at North Central (Ill.)
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
7:00 PM
Mary Hardin-Baylor at UW-La Crosse
10:00 PM
Linfield at Redlands
Live Stats Video Audio Audio
2:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at TCNJ
Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Mount Union at Muskingum
Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Heidelberg at John Carroll
Preview Live Stats Video Video Audio Audio
1:30 PM
King's at Lycoming
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Rowan at Wesley
Live Stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Coast Guard at Hampden-Sydney
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Wabash at Denison
Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Thomas More at Thiel
Preview Live Stats Video Audio
1:00 PM
Hartwick at Ithaca
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Hobart at Curry
Live Stats Live Stats Video Audio Audio
12:00 PM
Moravian at Johns Hopkins
Live Stats Video Audio
2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Bethel
Live Stats Video
2:00 PM
UW-Eau Claire at Wheaton (Ill.)
Preview Live Stats Video Audio Tickets
2:00 PM
Illinois Wesleyan at Simpson
Live Stats Video

What We're Reading