What was once a close game for three quarters became an easy victory for the Concordia Cobbers, as 13 fourth quarter points clinched the 30-9 victory over the Buena Vista Beavers, making the Moorhead team 2-0 on the season. It was a game that Concordia had dominated for much of the contest, but a few key plays kept them from blowing the game open until late.
The first quarter ended with Concordia up 7-6. They took the opening drive of the game 65 yards on eight plays for the score. Domenic Fraboni closed out the drive with a 12 yard touchdown run and Ben Wagner added the extra point for the 7-0 lead.
Buena Vista responded right away, taking their opening drive and moving 75 yards on nine plays. They scored when QB Bobby Brown hit Adam Cave for a 15-yard strike, but the extra point attempt was blocked, leaving the Beavers down by one.
Concordia’ second possession began at their own 20, and they marched 69 yards, eating up 6:30 on the 15-play drive, that stalled at the BVU 11. There, Wagner drilled a 29-yard field goal to make the score 10-6.
The Beavers punted on their next drive, putting Concordia at their own 34. From there they put together a relatively quick drive, needing just seven plays to go 66 yards for the touchdown. A Rick Hutchinson 14-yard run capped off the drive, and with the extra point it was 17-6.
The Beavers offense was going nowhere as they had two successive series of three-and-out before being forced to punt after just four plays on their next series. The Cobbers defense was playing strong and forcing the action. After their initial scoring drive, they allowed just eight combined yards on the next three drives.
Finally just before half the Beavers got back on the board. Starting from their 20 they moved the ball 65 yards to the Concordia 15. There the seven play drive came to an end, but not before Tyler Stolen kicked a 32-yard field goal to make it a one score game. That is how the half ended at 17-9.
The third quarter saw both teams move the ball well, but end up empty handed. The Beavers first two drives of the second half accounted for 16 total plays and 79 yards, but both would end on punts, despite the fact that they had the ball for 7:28. Concordia found the terrain just as hard to navigate as they had a 5-plus minute drive end with a punt as well.
With about two minutes left in the quarter, the Cobbers got the ball back and began a 12-play drive that resulted in a Concordia touchdown. Griffin Neal’s 34-yard pass to Jon Baune capped off the 74-yard drive, and after a failed point after attempt it was 23-9.
Two possessions later the Cobbers added their final touchdown of the game. With the help of a 10-yard holding penalty, Concordia moved to the Buena Vista 22, where Hutchinson made a few good moves on his way to the end zone and a Cobbers TD. For Hutchinson, he made the most of his five carries, gaining 50 yards and two TDs.
Neal had a very workman like day for Concordia, completing 12-23 passes for 144 yards. Fraboni led the team with 84 yards on 13 carries to go along with his one score. On defense Concordia was led by Nick Leen, who recorded 1.5 sacks and had 2.5 tackles for losses.
It was a very close contest until the final quarter, and now moves the Cobbers to 2-0. Concordia travels to play St. John’s next weekend.
By Robert Pannier
Senior Writer Covering the MIAC