MIAC Football Athletes-of-the-Week - Sept. 23, 2013

MIAC Football Offensive Player-of-the-Week

Austin Duncan, Hamline
New Orleans, La. / Jesuit

Though Hamline came up just short in Saturday's 20-17 overtime loss to Carleton, Piper football fans will long remember the effort of running back Austin Duncan (New Orleans, La./Jesuit). The sophomore star set school single-game records for carries and rushing yards as he nearly reached the 300-yard mark in an incredible performance. For his record-setting night, Duncan was named the MIAC Football Offensive Player-of-the-Week.

Duncan's school records of 48 carries for 298 yards - a 6.2 average - nearly carried Hamline to victory in its MIAC opener. He added two catches for eight yards to amass 306 total yards in a rare MIAC night game Saturday in St. Paul. Duncan's longest run of the night was 59 yards, as he broke the previous Hamline record by 70 yards and nearly matched the all-time MIAC record (314). Duncan leads the MIAC with 471 rushing yards, and his average of 235.5 yards per game leads the conference and all of NCAA Division III. He was never stopped for a loss on even one of his 48 carries Saturday.

Hamline's loss Saturday night evened its record at 1-1 thus far in 2013, with an 0-1 start in conference play. The Pipers will hope for another elite performance from their star sophomore this Saturday when they travel across the metro area to take on Augsburg in another tough MIAC matchup. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. in Minneapolis.

MIAC Football Defensive Player-of-the-Week

Nolan Lortz, Saint John's
St. Cloud, Minn. / Tech

The Saint John's football team pulled off one of the biggest upset in Division III Saturday when it knocked off second-ranked rival St. Thomas 20-18 in front of 10,800 fans on the Tommies' home field. The Johnnie defense came up big in the game, holding UST to 18 points and creating several crucial turnovers. Leading the way was senior defensive back Nolan Lortz, who led the Johnnies in tackles and picked off a pass to set up for the game-winning field goal. For his performance, Lortz was named the MIAC Football Defensive Player-of-the-Week.

Lortz finished with 10 tackles - eight solo - to lead Saint John's to the big victory. However, his biggest play came late in the third quarter when he intercepted a pass and returned it 22 yards to the St. Thomas 21-yard line. That set up a 34-yard field goal that ended up being the difference in the two-point win. Lortz - who made his first career start a week earlier - now has 14 tackles and two interceptions in 2013. His two picks rank second in the MIAC and his 10 solo tackles are the 15th most thus far.

The win helped the Johnnies improve to 3-0 (1-0 MIAC) under new Head Coach Gary Fashing, and they entered the Top 25 rankings at No. 21 in both the AFCA Coaches' Poll and D3football.com poll. SJU and Lortz hope to continue their spectacular start Saturday when they host (RV) Concordia in a huge matchup of 3-0 teams. The game kicks off in Collegeville at 1 p.m.

MIAC Special Teams Player-of-the-Week

Bryce Hentges, Concordia
Sauk Centre, Minn. / Sauk Centre

Saturday was a huge day for the Concordia football team. First their Troll rivalry trophy was featured on ESPN College GameDay, broadcasting in nearby Fargo, N.D., then the Cobbers defeated St. Olaf to retain the Troll in a thrilling 33-29 victory. Senior Bryce Hentges (Sauk Centre, Minn.) had a huge hand in the win, as he returned a kick for a big touchdown to answer an Ole score and averaged 41.5 yards on four returns to give Concordia great field position throughout the game. For his performance, Hentges was named the MIAC Football Special Teams Player-of-the-Week.

After St. Olaf scored a touchdown to cut the Cobber lead to just 13-7, Hentges took the ensuing kickoff and raced 85 yards for his huge momentum-changing touchdown. He also had returns to the Concordia 46 and 43 yard lines and racked up 166 yards on his four returns. Hentges had a big interception ad four tackles on defense as well. The return touchdown was the first in the MIAC this season, and Hentges ranks first in the MIAC with 186 kick return yards, and second with a 37.2 average.  

Thanks to Saturday's big victory, the Cobbers kept The Troll and improved to 3-0 overall and 1-0 in the MIAC. Concordia is currently receiving votes in both the AFCA Coaches' Poll and D3football.com Top 25. The Cobbers and Hentges hope to keep it rolling this weekend as they head to Collegeville for a huge matchup of undefeated teams. Concordia takes on No. 21-ranked Saint John's Saturday at 1 p.m.

2013 MIAC Football Athletes-of-the-Week




















Austin Duncan






Nolan Lortz


Saint John's




Bryce Hentges




Special Teams




Josh Bungum


Saint John's




Josh Treimer






Paul Graupner


St. Thomas


Special Teams




Griffin Neal






Josh Estes





Alexi Johnson


Saint John's


  Special Teams

Dec. 10: All times Eastern
at UW-Oshkosh 10, John Carroll 3
Box Score Recap Photos
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 14, Mount Union 12
Box Score Recap Photos
Dec. 16: All times Eastern
Mary Hardin-Baylor 10, at UW-Oshkosh 7
@ Salem, Va.
Box Score Photos
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