Mesabi shuts down Yellowjackets
RCTC unable to score on offense in 13-11 setback
VIRGINIA, Minn. -- RCTC ran into a tough and quick Mesabi Range defense in a 13-11 road loss in Minnesota Community College Conference football on Saturday.
The game matched two of the state powers on the season. Mesabi (4-0) took a 13-0 lead and then held the Yellowjackets (3-2) off in the second half. RCTC did not manage a single point on offense in the contest.
The Yellowjackets were held to a mere 127 yards of total offense and had seven turnovers. RCTC lost all five of its fumbles.
Mesabi had 248 yards on offense. Standout quarterback Chris Woodard threw for 182 yards and a touchdown.
Josh Bryant scored on a 2-yard run to give Mesabi a 13-0 lead in the third quarter. RCTC's Jason Conner returned the following kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown.
Twice in the fourth quarter Mesabi took a safety while in punt formation to give RCTC its final four points.
Freshman Chad Strike had rushed for more than 100 yards in each of his first four college games. But the stingy Mesabi defense shut him down Saturday. Strike was held to 44 yards on 21 carries and lost three fumbles.
Five other RCTC ballcarriers managed seven yards on 10 carries. The Yellowjackets finished with 51 yards rushing on 31 attempts.
The Yellowjackets didn't fare any better through the air. Quarterback Brenden Huewe was 9-for-34 for 76 yards and a pair of interceptions.
RCTC is so depleted at wide receiver that backup quarterback Derek Marks and defensive back Adrian Maddox were the team's top two pass catchers. Marks had four catches for 42 yards and Maddox two receptions for 15 yards. Fullback Brent Hovis also caught two passes for 15 yards.
Maddox also had an interception in the game as did RCTC linebacker Luis Castellanos.
The Yellowjackets open play in the Southern Division of the MCCC on Saturday when they face Ridgewater at 1:30 p.m. in Willmar.
scoring by quarters
RCTC 0 0 7 4 -- 11
; Mesabi Range 0 7 6 0 -- 13
; second quarter
MES -- Bryan Dalton 11 pass from Chris Woodward (Frank Williams kick), 4:28.
MES -- Josh Bryant 2 run (run failed), 4:19.
RCTC -- Jason Conner 99 kick return (Pat Neumuth kick), 4:01.
RCTC -- Safety, Mesabi punter knee down in the end zone, 10:48.
RCTC -- Safety, Mesabi punter knee down in the end zone, 3:50.
; First downs 7 12
; Total scrimmage yards 127 248
; Total yards rushing 51 66
; Total yards passing 76 182
; Passes attempted 35 26
; Passes completed 9 11
; Passes had intercepted 2 2
; Number of punts 9 8
; Average punt distance 35 28
; Fumbles/fumbles lost 5/5 2/1
; Number of penalties 8 711
; Yards penalized 60 61
; individual statistics
RCTC -- Chad Strike 21-44, Brent Hovis 3-8, Clay Dixon 1-1, Derek Marks 1-9, Andrew Williams 2-4, Brenden Huewe 3-(minus 15).
RCTC -- Brenden Huewe 9-for-34, 2 ints., 76 yards; Dan Roberts 0-1, 0 yards.
RCTC -- Derek Marks 4-42, Brent Hovis 2-18, Adrian Maddox 2-15, Chad Strike 1-1.