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Trojans fall short to Valley City State in football
September 17, 2011
VALLEY CITY, N.D. – The Dakota State University visited Valley City State in a battle of former Dakota Athletic Conference match-up Saturday night at Shelly Ellig Field. DSU outgained VCSU 429-353 in total yards, but the Vikings took advantage of the special teams as the Trojans fell short 44-27.
Dakota State dropped their overall record to 0-4. Valley City State, receiving votes to the NAIA Football national poll, improved their record to 2-1.
The Vikings got its first score of the game in the first quarter. Tommy Zinke connected to Ken Eliacin for a 27-yard touchdown pass. Thomas Cortez added a PAT kick to give VCSU a 7-0 lead.
DSU answered back with their first score of the game with less than 11 minutes remaining in the second quarter. Brandon Large threw a nine-yard touchdown pass to his cousin Carl Curtis. The PAT kick by Dennis Lechner was no good as the Trojans cut their deficit to 7-6. Dakota State used four plays for 37 yards with 1:13 for their scoring drive.
VCSU Cody Kilthau intercepted Large’s pass and returned for a 20-yard touchdown with 4:59 left before halftime. Cortez’s PAT kick was successful to extend Vikings’ lead to 14-6.
Cortez’s 36-yard field goal attempt was good before the halftime buzzer sound to give VCSU a 17-6 lead before halftime. The Vikings used 10 plays for 54 yards in four minutes for their score.
Dakota State used seven plays and 65 yards in the first 2:56 of the second-half for their next score. Lechner kicked a 32-yard field goal to cut Trojans’ deficit to 17-9.
The Vikings added a touchdown as Zinke threw a 55-yard touchdown pass to LeThor Proctor with 10:05 left in the third quarter. The PAT kick was good by Cortez to give the Vikings a 24-9 lead.
DSU’s Large added a 15-yard rushing touchdown with 8:27 on the clock in the third quarter to trim Vikings’ lead to 24-15.
With less than four minutes before fourth quarter, Zinke threw his third touchdown of the game. He connected to John Ziema for six yards to give VCSU 30-15 lead. Cortez’s PAT kick failed.
After the Trojans suffered a turnover on downs in their own territory, the Vikings quickly scored again. AJ Pfeifer rushed for four yards for a touchdown. The PAT kick by Cortez was good to extend Vikings’ lead to 37-15.
The Vikings outscored the Trojans 20-9 in the third quarter.
In the early fourth quarter, DSU used eight plays for 80 yards for their next scoring drive. Large connected to Jeb Olsen for eight yards. Lechner’s PAT kick was no good as the Trojans trailed at 37-21.
VCSU made it 44-21 with less than ten minutes left in regulation by Darius Anderson’ eight-yard rushing touchdown. Cortez added a PAT kick.
Large threw a two-yard touchdown pass to Curtis (his second touchdown of the game) as the Trojans trimmed Vikings’ lead to 44-27 with 3:16 left in the game.
Large recorded 31-for-43 for 305 passing yards with three touchdowns and an interception for Dakota State. He ran 18 times for 74 yards and a recorded a touchdown. Jeb Olsen rushed 19 times for 104 yards. Wes Dauz had nine receptions for 105 yards. Curtis had three catches for 25 yards with two touchdowns.
For VCSU, Zinke was 21-for-31 with 220 passing yards and recorded three touchdowns. Pfiefer ran the ball 17 times for 61 yards with a touchdown. Proctor had eight receptions for 107 yards and a touchdown.
Craig Hertz led DSU with 12 tackles. Eric Liles added seven tackles. Josh Licht recorded a quarterback sack.
Josh Hooey recorded 14 tackles for the Vikings. Kilthau had an interception and returned for 20 yards.
Dakota State broke a new school record for most first-downs with 31. The previous mark was 30 versus Jamestown on Oct. 23, 2010. The Trojans held the Vikings to 16 first-downs.
The Trojans had 305 passing yards compared to the Vikings’ 220. DSU had 88 plays in the game compared to the VCSU 64.
Dakota State returns home next Saturday as they play in the annual Trojan homecoming game. The Trojans welcome Northwestern (IA) at Trojan Field. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director