November 5, 2011

Lutes Build Early Lead, Hold On to Beat Pacific

More news about: Pacific Lutheran

With the victory, PLU improved to 5-3 overall to assure itself of back-to-back winning seasons. The Lutes are 3-2 in the conference. Pacific, in its second year of collegiate football after a 19-year hiatus from the sport, finishes its season with a 1-8 overall record and a 1-5 mark in the conference.

The Lutes dominated the Boxers through the first half in building up a 28-0 lead at the intermission. Quarterback Zack Halverson, one of 19 seniors introduced prior to the game on Senior Day, was 13-for-14 for 263 yards and four touchdowns in the first 30 minutes. His touchdown passes covered 41 yards to senior Alex McDiarmid, 19 and 2 yards to Lucas Sontra, and 69 yards to senior Tyler Bowen.

The ground game accounted for 93 first half yards, including 38 on four carries by Zack Baldwin, as the Lutes piled up 356 yards to 89 for the Boxers.

PLU added a touchdown six minutes in the third quarter on another Halverson aerial, this one covering 32 yards to Kyle Warner, to make it 35-0. Pacific finally got on the board at the 5:12 mark of the third period when Moses Villareal-Gomez converted a 28-yard field goal after the Lutes turned the ball over deep in their own territory on a bad punt snap.

The final quarter featured three onside kicks, two of which scrappy wide receiver Blake Anthony recovered for Pacific, and a passing frenzy by second string Boxers quarterback P.J. Minaya. It also led to some uneasiness in the PLU side of the grandstands.

Minaya drove the Boxers 65 yards in 10 plays and hit Matt Nyberg with a 3-yard scoring pass to make it 35-10. PLU's Matt Johns recovered the first of the Pacific onside kicks, but the Lutes were forced to punt after failing to pick up a first down. After getting the ball at their own 15-yard line, the Boxers went 85 yards in nine plays, scoring on Minaya's 2-yard pass to Bryce Kershner with 2:40 remaining. Minaya scrambled 22 yards on a 3rd-and-13 to highlight the drive.

That made the score 35-17, and when the Anthony came up with the ball at the bottom of a scrum on the next onside kick, the Boxers were again in business. This time they drove 55 yards on nine plays for the score. Minaya hit a sliding Nelson Kawai with a 19-yard pass to the 2-yard line, and after a false start penalty moved the ball back five yards Brian Taylor caught a 7-yard scoring aerial.

With 40 seconds left on the clock and still needing two scores, Pacific again recovered the onside kick, Anthony coming up with the ball at the bottom of a scrum of players. On the first play from scrimmage, Minaya just missed connecting with Jordan Fukumoto, who had gotten behind the PLU secondary, and the game ended six plays later on Minaya's incomplete pass into the end zone.

When all was said and done, the Lutes had the 35-24 victory.

PLU ended the game with 438 yards of offense, including 336 through the air. After his hot start, Halverson finished 18-for-26 for 336 yards with a career-best five touchdowns (one from the school record) and no interceptions. Dalton Ritchey caught four balls for 39 yards to lead a group of nine different receivers with at least one catch each.

The Lutes ground game netted 102 yards on 29 carries, with Baldwin's halftime numbers of 38 yards on four carries leading the way.

After managing slightly more than 12 minutes of possession in the first half, Pacific had the ball for 21:07 of the final 30 minutes. Minaya was 23-for-34 for 223 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. Fukumoto had eight receptions for 83 yards, Nelson Kawai added six catches for 89 yards, and Nyberg had five gabs for 42 yards. Of Pacific's 43 net rushing yards, Minaya had 35 of them on five carries.

The Boxers finished with 369 yards of offense and 24 first downs to 19 for the Lutes. They also enjoyed nearly seven minutes more than the Lutes in time of possession.

Senior linebackers Michael Warsaw and Adam Schwander led the Lutes with nine and eight tackles, respectively. Another pair of seniors, end Erik Magnussen and linebacker T.J. Suek, both had a pair of quarterback sacks.

PLU plays its final game of the season next Saturday when it takes on the Willamette Bearcats at McCulloch Stadium in Salem, Ore.

- PLU -

Sep. 30: All times Eastern
6:30 PM
Randolph-Macon at Shenandoah
Preview Preview Live Stats
6:30 PM
Emory and Henry at Washington and Lee
Video Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
Oct. 1: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Massachusetts Maritime at Fitchburg State
Preview Preview Live Stats
12:00 PM
Becker at Gallaudet
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Merchant Marine at Hobart
Video Live Stats Audio
12:00 PM
RPI at Rochester
Video Live Stats Audio
12:00 PM
Endicott at MIT
Video Video Preview Live Stats
12:00 PM
Juniata at Johns Hopkins
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Montclair State at William Paterson
1:00 PM
Hamilton at Wesleyan
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Bates at Tufts
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Wabash at Hiram
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Middlebury at Colby
Video
1:00 PM
Amherst at Bowdoin
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Frostburg State at Kean
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Kenyon at DePauw
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Ferrum at Greensboro
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Methodist
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
FDU-Florham at Wilkes
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Anna Maria at Castleton
Video Preview Live Stats Tickets
1:00 PM
Moravian at Ursinus
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Stevenson at Misericordia
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Springfield at St. Lawrence
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Thomas More at Westminster (Pa.)
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Alma at Kalamazoo
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Franklin and Marshall at Dickinson
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Wesley at Southern Virginia
Video Preview Preview Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Adrian at Albion
1:00 PM
Husson at SUNY-Maritime
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Apprentice at Alfred State
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
TCNJ at Salisbury
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Buffalo State at St. John Fisher
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Salve Regina at Curry
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Gettysburg
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Lebanon Valley
1:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Denison
Video Preview Live Stats
1:00 PM
Utica at Ithaca
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Alfred at Morrisville State
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Western New England at Nichols
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
King's at Albright
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Catholic at Guilford
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Muhlenberg at Susquehanna
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Concordia-Chicago at Trine
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Huntingdon at N.C. Wesleyan
Video Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Minnesota-Morris at MacMurray
1:00 PM
Birmingham-Southern at Chicago
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Westminster (Mo.) at Crown
1:30 PM
Oberlin at Allegheny
Video Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Mount Ida at Norwich
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Trinity (Conn.) at Williams
Video Preview Live Stats
1:30 PM
Baldwin Wallace at Marietta
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Heidelberg
Preview Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Union at WPI
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Maine Maritime at Coast Guard
Video Preview Live Stats
1:30 PM
John Carroll at Wilmington
Video Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Mount Union at Ohio Northern
Video Preview Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Franklin at Manchester
Preview Live Stats
1:30 PM
Mount St. Joseph at Hanover
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Widener at Lycoming
Video Live Stats Audio
1:30 PM
Defiance at Earlham
Video Preview Live Stats
2:00 PM
Capital at Otterbein
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Plymouth State at Westfield State
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Wittenberg at Wooster
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Anderson at Rose-Hulman
Video Preview Preview Live Stats
2:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Bridgewater
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Waynesburg at Grove City
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Cortland at Hartwick
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Centre at Hendrix
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Eureka at Greenville
Video
2:00 PM
Northwestern (Minn.) at Iowa Wesleyan
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Concordia (Wis.) at Lakeland
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Rockford at Benedictine
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Aurora at Wisconsin Lutheran
Video Preview Live Stats
2:00 PM
Nebraska Wesleyan at Luther
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Rhodes at Sewanee
Video Preview Live Stats
2:00 PM
Lake Forest at St. Norbert
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Gustavus Adolphus
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Hamline at Carleton
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
St. John's at Bethel
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at UW-Platteville
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Loras
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Sul Ross State at Hardin-Simmons
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at UW-Eau Claire
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Beloit at Lawrence
2:00 PM
Cornell at Monmouth
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Wartburg at Coe
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Dubuque at Central
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Illinois Wesleyan
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
McMurry at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Augustana
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Macalester at Ripon
2:00 PM
Grinnell at Illinois College
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Howard Payne at Louisiana College
Audio
2:00 PM
UW-River Falls at UW-La Crosse
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Belhaven
Video Live Stats
2:10 PM
Augsburg at St. Thomas
Video Live Stats
3:00 PM
Washington and Jefferson at Thiel
Video Live Stats
3:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Morthland
Video
3:00 PM
St. Scholastica at Martin Luther
3:00 PM
Carthage at Carroll
Video Live Stats
3:00 PM
UW-Stout at UW-Oshkosh
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
4:00 PM
Willamette at Puget Sound
Video Video Preview Live Stats Audio
4:00 PM
Whittier at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
Pacific at Pacific Lutheran
Video Preview Preview Live Stats Live Stats
4:30 PM
Lewis and Clark at Linfield
Video Live Stats Audio
5:00 PM
Framingham State at Mass-Dartmouth
Video Live Stats
5:00 PM
Averett at LaGrange
Live Stats
5:00 PM
Whitworth at George Fox
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Olivet at Hope
Video Preview Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
6:00 PM
Bethany at Carnegie Mellon
Video Preview Preview Preview Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
St. Vincent at Case Western Reserve
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Christopher Newport at Rowan
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
6:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Western Connecticut
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Berry at Washington U.
Video Video Preview Preview Live Stats Live Stats Audio Audio
7:00 PM
North Park at Millikin
10:00 PM
Pomona-Pitzer at Chapman
Video Preview Live Stats Live Stats Tickets
10:00 PM
La Verne at Cal Lutheran
Video Preview Live Stats
10:00 PM
Occidental at Redlands
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
Oct. 1: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Merchant Marine at Hobart
Video Live Stats Audio
12:00 PM
Juniata at Johns Hopkins
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
TCNJ at Salisbury
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Thomas More at Westminster (Pa.)
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Wabash at Hiram
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Buffalo State at St. John Fisher
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Stevenson at Misericordia
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Springfield at St. Lawrence
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Huntingdon at N.C. Wesleyan
Video Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Mount Union at Ohio Northern
Video Preview Preview Live Stats Audio Audio
1:30 PM
Franklin at Manchester
Preview Live Stats
2:00 PM
Wittenberg at Wooster
Video Preview Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Wheaton (Ill.) at Illinois Wesleyan
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at UW-Platteville
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
St. John's at Bethel
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
McMurry at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Sul Ross State at Hardin-Simmons
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Belhaven
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Dubuque at Central
Video Live Stats Audio
2:10 PM
Augsburg at St. Thomas
Video Live Stats
3:00 PM
UW-Stout at UW-Oshkosh
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
4:30 PM
Lewis and Clark at Linfield
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Christopher Newport at Rowan
Video Live Stats Audio Audio