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Scots Fall in St. Paul

November 28, 2011

Despite forcing four turnovers and a halftime tie, the
Monmouth Fighting Scots were unable to best the St. Thomas Tommies in the
second half Saturday.

As the two teams got set for the rematch of the meeting in
2009, no one could have foreseen the battle that was yet to ensue. The Tommies
would kick off to Monmouth’s Mike Blodgett to get the game started. The Scots
began their first drive from their own 32 yard line. The offense struggled to
get a push going three and out, gaining just nine yards on an Alex Tanney
connection to Blodgett.

The Tommies opened the game with a designed wide receiver rush
for 12 yards by senior  Fritz Waldvogel. Running back Colin Tobin added
another 12 yard run of his own on 1st and 10 from the Monmouth 43
yard line. With already their third 1st and 10 on the day,
quarterback Dakota Tracey dropped back and targeted his six foot sophomore
receiver, Dan Noehring but the pass was incomplete. Tracey’s next pass came on
3rd and 10 after a rush by Torbin for no gain. Tracey took the snap
and was picked off by Monmouth’s Jacob Wilson at the 42 and returned 46 yards
to the St. Thomas 12 yard line.

The St. Thomas defense held strong deep in their own red zone.
The Scot’s offense was only able to get a push of seven yards over three plays
before opting for a 23 yard field goal attempt to the put them on the board
first, 3-0 Scots.

The home team would take over with good field position after a
23 yard kickoff return by Waldvogel to the UST 38 yard line. Tobin would be the
feature back for the Tommies on this drive, carrying the ball three times for a
net of just six yards. Facing 4th and 4, St. Thomas was backed up
five more yards by an illegal motion penalty. Now 4th and 9, the
Tommies would punt 49 yards, pinning the Scots deep in their own territory.

The third ranked St. Thomas defense would remain stringent
giving up just four yards on the next drive. Tanney’s first down pass was
complete to tight end David Milroy for just two yards. Running back Trey Yocum
rushed for two yards on 2nd and 8 before being stoped by St. Thomas’
Tony Danna. 3rd and 6 would see senior running back Nick Law’s first
snap of the game but Tanney and Law were unable to connect. Punter Brik
Wedekind led the Monmouth punt team onto the field on 4th and 6 and
would keep the return short after a 37 yard punt into UST territory.

St. Thomas’ next drive would end in the second turnover
of the day for the Tommies. The Tommies set up a good looking drive gaining
three first downs. The first coming on a 10 yard completion the Waldvogel on 2nd
and 1, then again on a 2nd and 10 quarterback rush by Tracey for 18
yards to the Monmouth 7. On 1st and goal from the seven, the
Tommie’s center to quarterback exchange was fumbled and recovered by Monmouth’s
Adam Hoste on the 7 yard line.

On 1st and 10, Tanney dropped back and
targeted senior Evan Banks but was unable to connect. With the wind seeming to
play a factor, the Scots offense was unable to play their usual vertical
passing game, instead resorting to shorter, more horizontal passes. Tanney’s
next pass was complete for three yards to Blodgett to the MC 10 yard line. Now
facing 3rd and 7, Tanney again targeted Blodgett but was
unsuccessful. Wedekind, who averages just two punts a game, took the second for
his second of the first quarter. The punt travelled 37 yards to Waldvogel who
was forced out of bounds by Monmouth’s Jake Willis for a negative gain of a yard.

Tracey’s first down pass fell incomplete. Then, on 2nd
and 10, Tobin broke free for a 39 yard gain to the Monmouth 9 yard line. The
Tommies called on Tobin again on 1st and goal and the back would
rush for just two yards. On 2nd and goal from the MC 7, Monmouth’s
Ryan Flannigan came up from the secondary to stop the back for a one yard loss
on the play. Next, the MC defense forced Tracey out of the pocket and out of
bounds for a gain of just a yard. St. Thomas brought out its field goal unit on
4th and goal from the 7 to tie the game at 3-3.

The usually high powered Monmouth offense was still unable to
get much of a push as they took over with just under two minutes to play in the
first quarter. Yocum would rush for a yard on 1st and 10 to the MC
22 yard line. The St. Thomas secondary continued to deny the deep ball as
Tanney connect with Blodgett for three yards on 2nd and 9. Tanney’s
next pass on 3rd and 6 from the MC 25 yard line fell incomplete but
was intended for Blodgett. Wedekind’s 4th and 6 punt would end up at
the UST 27 yard line when Waldvogel was forced backwards five yards, again by
MC’s Willis.

The Tommie’s next drive started with just over a minute left
in the quarter. Tracey was forced out of the pocket on 1st and 10
and gained eight yards before being brought down by MC’s Nate Van Metre. On 2nd
and 2, Tracey would hand the ball off to Tobin for a rush of six yards as the
first quarter came to a close. As the second quarter started, Tracey dropped
back and connected with Waldvogel for 48 yards to the Monmouth 11 yard line.
Tobin would take the next hand off on 1st and 10 before being
stopped by MC’s Shane Reschke for just a yard. On 2nd and 9, Tracey
found Waldvogel for no gain, but a holding penalty would back the Tommies up to
the Monnmouth 16 yard line. Facing 3rd and 15, Tracey targeted
Noehring but was unable to make the completion. As the field goal team took the
field for the 34 yard attempt. Junior kicker Tim Albright’s kick was no good
keeping the score tied at 3-3.

The Scot’s next drive would end in Wedekind’s fourth punt of
the half. On 1st and 10, St. Thomas’ Tremayne Williams broke through
the MC offensive line and sacked Tanney for and eight yard loss. On 2nd
and 18, Tanney found Blodgett open for 14 yards to the MC 26 yard line. On 3rd
and 4, Tanney’s pass fell incomplete. Wedekinds punt would travel 44 yards
before sailing out of bounds.

St. Thomas’ next drive took place over about four minutes
and nine plays. Tobin atet away at the Monmouth defense, rushing for 65 yards
on seven carries; Tracey would add two rushes of his own for five yards.
Tracey’s final rush for a yard resulted in the first touchdown of the day.
Albright’s kick was good, giving the Tommie’s the lead, 10-3.

False start penalties riddled the Monmouth offensive line on
their next drive. Taking over with 7:08 left in the half, MC’s Todd Groth
jumped offsides on 1st and 10.  Now facing 1st and
15, Tanney handed off to Law for a rush of two yards. Tanney found Blodgett
open for 12 yards to the UST 47 on 2nd and 13. On 3rd and
1, Tanney connected with Blodgett again for two yards. Law would rush for two
yards on 1st and 10 to the UST 43 yard line. The Scot’s second false
start penalty would come on 2nd and 8 when Matt Wright was found
guilty of snap simulation. It was all uphill for the Scots from here. Tanney
was sacked for 16 yards on 2nd and 13. Now facing 3rd and
29, the Scots opted run rather than pass only gaining two yards. Wedekind would
again take the field for a 45 yard punt out of bounds to the MC 38 yard line.

Despite the slowed offense, the MC defense remained hardnosed.
Tracey’s first down pass intended for Noehring fell incomplete and Torbin was
held to two yards on 2nd and 10. On 3rd and 8, Tracey was
forced out of the pocket and scrambled for a gain of 10 yards before being
forced out of bounds. Then on 1st and 10, Tracey hand the ball off
to Torbin who broke through the first level where he met MC safety Erik Weber
who forced the ball to the turf and fell on top of it, Scot’s possession.

With 2:28 left in the half, head coach Steve Bell prepared the
offense for a two minute drill, but a two minute drill would prove unneeded. On
1st and 10, Tanney dropped bac and delivered a strike to Blodgett
who would run for a touchdown after the catch. Matt Batton’s extra point was
good tying the score once more at 10-10.

The ensuing 57 yard kick return by Waldvogel was negated by a
holding penalty against the Tommies and would back them up to their own 8 yard
line. 1st and 10 brought a Tobin rush for 21 yards to the UST 29
yard line with 1:49 left in the half. Tobin got the call again on 1st
and 10 and would rush for nine yards before being brought down by MC’s Rod
Ojong. Tracey was unable to connect with Waldvogel on 2nd and 1 but
Tobin found a hole for five yards on 3rd and 1. The new set of downs
would end in a punt after three straight Tracey incompletions. Taking over with
:43 left in the half, the Scots would kneel and take the tie into halftime.

The second half would start with a Waldvogel kickoff return
for 100 yards and a score putting the home team ahead 17-10.

Despite forcing multiple turnovers on the day, the Scots were
held scoreless in the second half while St. Thomas went on to Score three more
times after the second half opening kickoff score. The Scot’s only turnover of
the day, and perhaps the turning point, came on a Tanney fumble recovered by
St. Thomas’ Danny Kane with just over six minutes to play in the third quarter.
The Scot’s season was ended by St. Thomas, in the second round, for the second time
in a row with a final score of 38-10.


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