Nov 17, 2019 5:00 PM

CSC season closes with loss to RMAC champs, but winning record after tough 1-4 start

Posted Nov 17, 2019 5:00 PM

By: Con Marshall

CSC Sports Information


CHADRON, Neb. -- November 16, 2019 -- Colorado School of Mines put its potent offense on full display here Saturday while wrapping up its regular season by defeating Chadron State College 70-28 in a Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference contest.


The Orediggers, now 11-0, and ranked seventh in NCAA Division II, scored their first four touchdowns on pass plays while building a 28-7 lead halfway through the second quarter. Their next six touchdowns came on rushing plays while they piled up 440 yards on the ground, third most ever against the Eagles.


Their 683 total net yards are the most ever yielded by Chadron State, topping the 658 that Bemidji State managed in 2004. Mines was forced to punt just three times and also lost a fumble, but otherwise played an almost flawless game on offense.


The 70 points are the most ever scored against the Eagles aside from the 73 points that Abilene Christian posted during Chadron State's 76-73 triple overtime win in the 2007 playoff game.  The Eagles have scored at least 70 points eight times in the 100-plus years they've played football.


"These guys (Colorado Mines) are a top 10 team, and they acted like a top 10 team today," said Chadron State Coach Jay Long. "When you play a team of this caliber, you need the ball to roll your way some of the time, and you also need to make big plays when they're available. Those things didn't happen very often today.


"This wasn't the way we wanted to end the season," added Long, "but we bounced back from a 1-4 start and won our next five games. I'm proud of my coaching staff for keeping our guys up throughout the season, and I'm proud of these seniors who played their last game today for providing an example of what it means to be an Eagle. We'll keep working to get to the next level, and admit that Mines played a great game today."


Freshman quarterback John Matocha got the Orediggers off to a great start by completing his first six passes, including touchdown tosses of 13 and 31 yards to sophomore Josh Johnston. Matocha's third TD pass was an 18-yarder to redshirt freshman Mason Karp and the fourth was a 21-yard shot to Johnston.


Matocha finished the day with 14 completions in 19 attempts for 243 yards. Johnston caught six passes for 103 yards and Karp five for 123.


The Mines running game was led by sophomore Michael Zeman, who carried 20 times for 228 yards. His big play was a 75-yard romp up the middle that gave the Orediggers a 35-14 halftime lead. He also scored on a two-yard run in the third quarter after Mines recovered a CSC fumble and Matocha connected with Karp for a 29-yard gain. 


Alternate running back Brandon Farmer also had a great game. He carried 10 times for 143 yards, including touchdown jaunts of five and 46 yards. The visitors' other touchdowns were on a three-yard run by Dawson Johnson after Farmer had romped 72 yards and on Nathan Mackey's 54-yard gallop that closed out the scoring with 6:37 left to play.


Placekicker Scott Marshall was good on the extra point attempts following all 10 touchdowns.


Chadron State scored a touchdown in each quarter.


The first came on a two-yard pass from quarterback Dalton Holst to senior wide receiver Tevon Wright to cap a 70-yard drive. The Eagles also went 72 yards in 12 plays for their second TD, a two-yard dive by sophomore Elijah Myles, who helped spark the drive with an 18-yard run.


Jackson Dickerson, a senior from Chadron who had been sidelined by a leg injury since the second game of the season, returned to action and scored the Eagles' third touchdown on a 10-yard pass from Holst. The big gainer in the 65-yard march was a 40-yard gain from Holst to inside receiver Cole Thurness.


Just two plays were needed to post the Eagles' fourth quarter touchdown. They were back-to-back 44- and 31-yard passes from Holst to Wright.


Holst finished with 19 completions in 38 attempts for 241 yards and the three TDs. He ends the season with 3,106 yards through the air and 33 touchdown passes, both CSC season records.


Wright caught nine passes for 133 yards Saturday and finished the year with 74 catches for 1,146 yards and 16 touchdown grabs. His yardage figure ranks second all-time at CSC and his touchdown total is the most in a season. He also owns the school's career touchdown reception record with 26.


The Eagles rushed for a season-low 109 yards, but that's double what Colorado Mines had yielded per game through its first 10 games. 


Colorado Mines      14     21     21     14    ----70

Chadron State        7      7      7      7    ----28    

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Nov 17, 2019 5:00 PM
Broncos find another way to lose late

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings had barely moved the ball at all, when they gathered in a humbled locker room after an awful first half.


Picking up the pace with the two-minute offense was about their only hope of a comeback. They delivered one in stunning fashion against the Denver Broncos.


“Suddenly, it just has a different feel to it, and the next thing you know, you’re going,” quarterback Kirk Cousins said.


The Vikings erased a 20-0 halftime deficit with touchdowns on each of their four drives in the second half, fending off the Broncos by forcing three straight incomplete passes in the end zone over the final 10 seconds to preserve a 27-23 victory Sunday.


This was the first time in five years — a span of 100 games including the playoffs — that an NFL team won after trailing by 20 or more points at halftime, though New England did defeat Atlanta in Super Bowl 51 after an 18-point deficit after two quarters grew to 28-3.


“We can’t count ourselves out. We had 30 minutes of football. Was it going to take perfect football? Most likely,” tight end Kyle Rudolph said. “But all we can go out there and do is worry about the first drive, and getting points, and see what happens.”


Cousins went 29 for 35 for 319 yards and three scores for the Vikings (8-3), overcoming a system-wide failure in the first half that included a lost fumble of his during a sack that led to one of three field goals by Brandon McManus for the Broncos (3-7).


Cousins hit Stefon Diggs for a 54-yard touchdown pass that brought the crowd noise to a deafening level and cut the lead to 23-20. McManus went wide right from 41 yards on his fourth attempt, and Cousins found Rudolph wide open for a 32-yard score on the next possession with 6:10 left.


“I like when adversity hits and you see what kind of guys you’ve got,” Diggs said.


Both of those throws by Cousins came off bootleg rollouts to his left, the type of passing play he has long thrived on. After being stymied for just 47 total yards in the first half, the Vikings turned to their hurry-up offense with enviable results.


“Throwing an interception into double coverage is not going to get you back in the game,” Cousins said. “So you take what they give you. You play one play at a time, and you trust that if they give you a shot, you take it.”


Brandon Allen, the fill-in quarterback after the injury to Joe Flacco and the impending debut of rookie Drew Lock, drove the Broncos to the cusp of a comeback of their own with a drive that included three fourth-down conversions.


With first-and-goal from the 4, but only 10 seconds left and no timeouts remaining, Allen had three chances at the winner. Trae Waynes knocked down the first one, Jayron Kearse had a hand on the second and the last try for Noah Fant sailed past the rookie tight end after he and Kearse tussled for position.


The Broncos have not scored a touchdown in the fourth quarter for six straight games. The last team guilty of such a severe second-half collapse was Atlanta on Oct. 26, 2014, when a 21-0 lead at home turned into a 22-21 victory for Detroit. According to Sportradar, this was only the 14th time in NFL history that a 20-plus-point halftime deficit turned into defeat.


“Didn’t sustain any drives,” Allen said, “and that put our defense in a bad spot.”


HORRID HALF


The Vikings punted on their first four possessions and already trailed 10-0 when they finally got a first down. With the deficit at 17-0, Cousins hit Diggs for a 34-yard gain that was wiped out by a holding penalty on left tackle Riley Reiff, who had a particularly difficult time against the pass rush.


On the other side, the Broncos drove 90 yards for their first touchdown, a third-and-goal throw to tight end Troy Fumagalli for his first career score. They spiced up their play calling with repeated success, using a 38-yard reverse pass by Courtland Sutton to fellow wide receiver Tim Patrick. Sutton kept the ball on two more end-around plays during that drive, including a fourth-and-1 run from the 7 to set up their second touchdown.


One break went Minnesota’s way, an ominous end to Denver’s momentum. The kickoff after the field goal that followed the fumble by Cousins was fumbled and lost by Ameer Abdullah at the 17 by Josey Jewell with 60 seconds left. Allen’s pass for Fant on the next play was intercepted by Andrew Sendejo, preventing the Broncos from taking a four-score lead.


“He made a bad throw into coverage, and they picked it,” Broncos coach Vic Fangio said. “That’s one of those where you almost in hindsight maybe we should have just ran it three times and got our three points and been happy. But you would have roasted me if I did that.”


INJURY REPORT


Broncos: FB Andy Janovich, who bulled his way into the end zone on a third-and-goal run from the 1 in the second quarter, hurt his elbow while being tackled at the end of a short reception and did not return.


Vikings: SS Harrison Smith hurt his hamstring in the fourth quarter and didn’t return. LB Ben Gedeon suffered a concussion in the first quarter and was done for the day. Four other starters were already inactive: Adam Thielen, RG Josh Kline (concussion), NT Linval Joseph (knee) and FS Anthony Harris (groin).


UP NEXT


Broncos: Facing a stretch of four road games in five weeks that began in Minnesota, the Broncos play at Buffalo next Sunday. They’ve lost their last two road games against the Bills in 2017 and 2011.


Vikings: After the second-latest bye week on the schedule in team history — in 1991, they were off the weekend of Dec. 1 — the Vikings return to action on Dec. 2 at Seattle. This is their second straight year with a Monday night game on the road against the Seahawks in December.