Saints down Bucs, 19-14
The St. Peter Saints used a potent running attack and came up with three big turnovers inside their own 20-yard line to spoil homecoming for the Blue Earth Area Bucs.
The final score was 19-14.
“Mistakes cost us,” says Coach Randy Kuechenmeis-ter. “We’ve got to score when we get in the red zone.”
St. Peter got out of the gate fast as they put together a 10-play, 80-yard drive to jump out to a 6-0 lead.
The big play of the drive came on the second play from scrimmage. Saints’ quarterback Beau Bachman gained 46 of his game-high 152 yards rushing to take the ball to the Bucs’ 31-yard line.
Bachman also picked up the final 3 yards for the touchdown with 7:29 to go in the first quarter. The only thing that didn’t go right for the visitors on the opening drive was their failed extra point attempt.
The Saints added to their lead in the second quarter. They got the ball after taking over on downs at their own 34-yard line. They proceeded to march down the field until they were slowed down by holding and offsides penalties.
Faced with third down and 17 to go, the Saints picked up six yards on a run by Nathan Haack up the middle to give them a fourth-and-11 to go at the BEA 24-yard line.
The Saints got all they needed – and more – as Aaron O’Gorman scampered down the sideline into the end zone for St. Peter’s second touchdown; the two-point conversion failed and with 7:59 to go in the half, the Bucs were on the short end of a 12-0 score.
Nate Carr caught the ensuing kickoff at the 17-yard line and returned it 27 yards to the Buccaneer 44. Quarterback Garrett Anderson took it across midfield to the Saints’ 40 before a pair of Joe Franta runs put the ball on the 35-yard line.
Faced with a third-and-5 situation, it was Anderson who powered his way for a 9-yard gain to the Saints’ 26-yard line and another first down.
A defensive pass interference call put the Bucs inside the red zone at the 13-yard line. Four plays later it was Anderson taking it in from 4 yards out for the Bucs first score. Justin Duelge’s extra-point kick was good and the score stood at 12-7 in favor of St. Peter with 3:31 remaining in the first half.
On the Saints next drive, the Bucs missed an opportunity to put points on the board. The Bucs forced a fumble two plays into the drive with Jake Lee recovering it at St. Peter’s 37-yard line.
Two plays later Anderson ran up the middle for a nice gain to the 26, but lost the ball and the Saints recovered. Anderson was also hurt on this play and was out until early in the second half.
A second Saints’ fumble gave Blue Earth Area another shot at closing the gap. This time backup quarterback Dalton Hurn was intercepted inside the 5-yard line and the score at halftime remained St. Peter 12, BEA 7.
The Bucs received the second half kickoff. Things picked up where they left off in the first half as the teams exchanged turnovers.
With Anderson now back in at quarterback, the Bucs started their second drive from the Saints’ 47-yard line following a fumble recovery by Mat Willner.
They proceeded to move the ball down to the 18-yard line before the Saints’ Schmidt stepped in front of a Buc receiver at the goal line to pick off Anderson’s pass and return it 30 yards.
One play later the Saints scored again as Bachman broke into the open on the way to a 70-yard TD run. This time the Saints converted the extra point and with 3:06 left in the third quarter they were up 19-7.By the start of the fourth quarter the Bucs had driven from their own 38-yard line to the Saints’ 12. A defensive pass interference penalty gave the host team a first down at the 7-yard line. Misfortune struck again as an Anderson fumble turned the ball over to the Saints at the 2-yard line with 11:50 left in the game.
It was late in the game before the Bucs could mount another scoring drive. They took over on their own 15-yard line and were faced with a fourth-and-10.
Dylan O’Rourke caught a pass for a first down at the 27-yard line. Four more consecutive completions and the Bucs were inside the red zone again at the Saints’ 15-yard line.
This time BEA would convert as Hurn was on the receiving end of Anderson’s pass for a touchdown. With 1:58 remaining, Duelge’s kick was good and the Bucs had pulled to within five points at 19-14.
The Bucs attempted an onside kick but the Saints recovered and were able to run out the clock to seal the victory.
Jake Lee led the defense with 15 tackles, followed by Sinjin Bell with 13 and Cody Eckhardt with 10.
Anderson was 18-42 passing for 189 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Hurn was 2-3 passing for 13 yards and one interception.
Joe Franta gained 57 yards on 12 carries with Anderson picking up 55 yards on eight carries.
Four Buc receivers caught five passes each. Carr and Hurn both gained 62 yards on their five receptions, while O’Rourke caught five balls for 43 yards and Collin Nienhaus added 35 yards on his five catches.
The loss gives the Bucs a 1-3 conference record and 2-4 overall.