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MTU’s defense plays well, but falls to St. Thomas

Tommies score in last minute
(WLUC)
Published: Sep. 14, 2021 at 9:48 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Michigan Tech’s defense made another strong stand but untimely mistakes doomed the Huskies in a 12-9 loss to University of St. Thomas at Kearly Stadium Saturday afternoon. The Tommies won their first game of the season while Tech fell to 1-1 amidst a four-game homestand.

The Huskies led 9-3 at halftime, but kicker Louis Hyde netted a 32-yard field goal with 59 seconds left in the game to give St. Thomas their first lead and help seal the 3-point contest.

Marvin Wright blocked a punt in the first quarter, leading to a Fred Kemp touchdown run of 38 yards but the Husky offense came up short and converted just 2-of-11 third downs.

“We made a few too many mistakes and that enabled St. Thomas to win a close game today,” said head coach Steve Olson. “We just have to continue to get better and keep working hard.”

Taking the clock down to 5:37, St. Thomas went 8 plays and 76 yards to Michigan Tech’s one yard line, including a 41-yard pass complete to Max Zimmerman. Quarterback Tommy Dolan dove ahead and fumbled the ball forward. Officials ruled Aiden Carlson recovered it for a touchdown. Brandon Michalak blocked the extra point for MTU.

“When they fumbled the ball in the endzone, we needed to come up with that and I felt we had chances. Somehow, they managed to recover it, so it’s little things like that.” Olson said. “I was still proud of our effort all around. Our team competed hard out there but we have to do better.

The Huskies stopped the Tommies on their next drive at the Tech 15-yard line and forced Louis Hyde to make a 32-yard field goal for a 12-9 deficit. The effort began on MTU’s 23-yard line following a short punt.

With 59 seconds to make a final push, junior quarterback Will Ark found three different receivers and rushed for 11 yards down to the UST 35. Ark’s next pass was intercepted by cornerback Johnson Falla, and St. Thomas ran out the remaining 45 seconds in the game.

St. Thomas created 269 yards of total offense compared to 233 for Tech. The Huskies held the Tommies to three points on a pair of drives into the red zone. Ark completed 19-of-29 passes for 144 yards and one interception. Marano led the ground game with 51 yards on 11 carries. Jordan Janssen netted 79 yards at wide receiver with nine catches.

Wright led the team with 10 tackles and Braxton Blackwell had 1.0 sack. Tommy Dolan finished 12-for-23 and 184 yards. Michigan Tech recorded five sacks.

Michigan Tech (1-1) is scheduled to host No. 14 Grand Valley State (0-0) next on Saturday, September 25 at 1 p.m. EST. It was St. Thomas’s first win as an NCAA Division I member school.

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