Offensive struggles continue in 29-3 loss at Midland
Midland University pulled away for a 29-3 GPAC football win over Concordia on Saturday afternoon in Fremont. The win snapped a 4-game losing streak for the Warriors, who improved to 4-4 overall and 3-4 in GPAC play. The offensive struggles continued for Concordia, who totaled just 124 yards of total offense in the loss. The Bulldogs (4-5, 3-4 GPAC) have now lost three in a row.
The host Warriors dominated the first half of play and took a comfortable 19-3 lead into halftime. Early in the first quarter, quarterback Greg Panelli found receiver Kyle Fries with a 49-yard touchdown reception to give the Warriors a 7-0 advantage. Midway through the first quarter, Treyton Buresh hit a 37-yard field goal to increase the Warrior lead to 10-0. With just over two minutes remaining in the first, Buresh hit another field goal, this time for 21 yards, and Midland grabbed a 13-0 lead heading into the second quarter.
With just over six minutes remaining in the first half, Buresh capped a 10 play, 75-yard drive with a 22-yard field goal, and Midland held a 16-0 lead. Concordia scored with just under two minutes to go in the half. The Bulldogs moved 39 yards in eight plays, and Kenny Zoeller (Spring, Texas) hit a 47-yard field goal to make the score 16-3. Midland quickly responded, however, and a 23-yard field goal by Buresh with 16 seconds remaining made the score 19-3 heading into halftime.
Midland totaled eight first downs and 200 yards of offense in the opening half of play compared to just 69 yards of offense for Concordia. The Bulldogs had just four first downs and turned the ball over twice in the first half.
The Warriors poured it on early in the second half. Midland marched 96 yards on 11 plays to take a 26-3 lead. Lee Horkey’s 1-yard touchdown run finished off the drive. Buresh added another field goal at the beginning of the fourth quarter for the final score of 29-3.
Concordia managed just eight first downs in the contest. Turnovers were a huge problem throughout the game, as the Bulldogs finished with five in the loss. Concordia totaled 107 rushing yards and just 17 passing yards. Derrick Blessing (Ogallala, Neb.) rushed for 57 yards on 13 carries. Jerrod Fleming (Houston, Texas) had a game-high 8.5 tackles, and Martin Rodriguez (Tucson, Ariz.) picked off a pass for the Bulldog defense.
Midland finished with 366 yards of total offense in the win (261 passing, 105 rushing). Panelli was 16-of-26 through the air for 225 yards with a touchdown and interception. Antony Johnson led the Warrior rushing attack with 69 yards on just seven carries. Scott Campbell and Khalid Waters each caught five passes, while Fries added three receptions for 69 yards and a score. Branden Brown totaled six tackles with an interception, and Clete Vrbka added six stops and a fumble recovery. Josh Hutchison and Nick Carlson also added interceptions for the Warriors defensively.
Concordia returns home to host Morningside College next Saturday. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Bulldog Stadium.