A Huge, Nationally-Ranked Leap Forward
MOORHEAD, Minn. (10/16/21)---Concordia battled No.17-ranked Bethel all the way to the wire before losing 21-16.
The Cobbers, who played their best all-around game of the year, had a chance to take the lead in the final minute of play, but an interception in the end zone - on a 2nd-and-1 play from the Bethel 10-yard line - stopped Concordia’s comeback attempt.
The game was a tight tilt for the full 60 minutes. Neither team was able to post back-to-backs scores and the Royals’ lead never reached double digits. Concordia was able to counter every Bethel score with a point production of their own.
The Cobbers trailed 7-0 after the first quarter, but then scored on their first possession of the second quarter to cut the lead to 7-6. The Royals countered with a TD before CC freshman kicker Damien Silus connected on a 42-yard field goal in the final two minutes of the first half to cut the lead 14-9 heading into the break.
There were only two touchdowns scored in the second half of play. Bethel took a 21-9 lead on a touchdown on their opening drive of the third quarter. Concordia’s Black Shirt defense came up with its second “scoop and score” TD of the year when senior linebacker Noah Jenson ripped the ball from the Bethel quarterback and proceeded to run 52 yards to the end zone.
The scoring would end with the defensive TD. Concordia had the best chance to score when they made a 9-play, 58-yard drive that ended in the interception.
The Cobber Black Shirts set the tone for the game early and then used that momentum to hold the nationally-ranked Royals to their lowest point and rushing totals of the season.
Concordia’s defense came up with the stop of the game when they came up with a goal line stand on Bethel’s first possession of the game. Bethel had the ball at the CC 5-yard line on second down and Nathan Phillips came up with a TD saving tackle at the 1-yard line. The entire Cobber defensive Front 7 held firm on 3rd-and-goal from the 1-yard line, and then Phillips came through with another huge tackle when he tackled the BU receiver in the flat as he tried to get in for the score.
The other huge point-saving play was turned in by senior defensive back Noble Scott when he stepped in front of a pass to make an interception on the Cobber 4-yard line as the Royals were looking to extend their lead to 19 points at the start of the fourth quarter.
Jenson and junior Ty Moser led the defensive charge from their linebacking spots. Both players had double-digit tackle totals. Jenson finished with 11 tackles, forced two fumbles and had three quarterback hurries. Moser came away with a career-high 15 tackles and had a pass break up.
Phillips and Mitchell Sullivan also put up career-high numbers in total tackles. Both players record 7 tackles on the day.
The offense once again used an effective mix of run and pass to rack up yardage. The Cobbers had 34 passing attempts and 28 rushes to post 258 yards of total offense.
Senior quarterback Tanner Dubois was 22-for-34 for 177 yards. His favorite target was Zach Wolf who caught five passes for 37 yards.
Ben Hoggarth and Peyton Mortenson were the workhorses on the ground. Hoggarth had a team-high 15 carries and scored the lone offensive TD on the day when he hammered his way into the end zone on a 1-yard run in the second quarter.
Mortenson racked up a team-high 37 rushing yards on nine carries.
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