Roste, Royals Reign over Auggies, 62-6
For anyone who had concerns that the Bethel University football team would be looking ahead to next Saturday’s game against St. Thomas, those fears were quickly dispelled when the Royals scored 48 first half points on their way to a 62-6 victory over Augsburg University Saturday afternoon. The Royals put up 613 yards of total offense, led by quarterback Jaran Roste who threw for 272 yards and three touchdowns. The Bethel defense put together another amazing showing, holding Augsburg to 244 yards of offense while sacking Auggies QB Quinn Frisell four times.
Things got off to a rather inauspicious start when the team turned the ball over on their opening drive. Roste completed passes of 19 and 15 yards to move the ball to the Augsburg 13. He then hit Drew Larsen for 12 yards, but the wide receiver was stripped of the ball trying to get to the end zone.
That proved to be the one highlight of the first half for the Auggies. After the Bethel defense forced a three and out, the Royals scored on their next seven possessions. The first came off the arm of Roste as his 29 yard completion to Jon Pytlak moved the ball to the Auggies 16. Two plays later, the QB hit Hal Banfield for a 12 yard touchdown pass.
On the next possession, Joel Koenecke set up another score with a 25 yard carry to the Augsburg five. Fisher Marberg scored on the next play to extend the lead to 14. Larsen made up for his earlier fumble with a 12 yard reception just before the end of the first quarter to make it 21-0. Larsen was pressed into double duty, serving as the team’s place kicker, adding eight extra points on the afternoon.
In the second quarter, the Royals staff unleashed their relentless group attack. Koenecke scored from five yards out to complete a seven play, 55 yard drive, making it 28-0. On their next possession, Bethel moved 85 yards in 13 plays as Roste connected with John Carlson for a nine yard touchdown on third and goal to cap off the drive. That made it 35-0 heading into the half.
The Auggies took the second half kickoff, moving to the Bethel 24 where they were faced with a fourth and 2. They handed the ball to Quran Al-Hameed, who was stuffed by Kyle Peach and Collin Curtis after a one yard gain.
The Royals offense came back onto the field and moved 75 yards in seven plays before scoring again. The drive got off to a great start when Sid Boros found a seam, racing 45 yards before being tackled at the Augsbug 30. Six plays later, Fisher Marberg scored from one yard out.
On the next possession for the Auggies, Anthony Hockett intercepted a Quinn Frisell pass at the 37, found an opening and raced the distance for the pick six to make it 49-0. The Bethel run of touchdowns would finally end when they missed a 30 yard field goal attempt just before the end of the third quarter.
Following the missed field goal, Augsburg finally got on the board. Frisell led an 11 play, 80 yard drive that ended with a touchdown. The Auggies quarterback completed five of seven passes on the drive, including a 14 yard touchdown pass to Zach Kes to make it 49-6.
From there, the Royals would add two more touchdowns on long runs. The first came on the very next play when Roste handed off to Landon Liudahi and he burst through the line, racing 63 yards untouched to extend the lead to 50. On the next possession, it would be Hunter Thomas with the big gain, racing 58 yards for a score to make it 62-6. That would be the final.
Jaran Roste was spectacular, completing 21 of 23 passes for 272 yards and three touchdowns. Jon Pytlak led the team receiving with six catches for 88 yards. Drew Larsen and John Carlson each had five catches and a touchdown reception. The running game amassed 319 yards, led by Sid Boros with 10 carries for 74 yards. Hunter Thomas had two carries for 70 yards and a score and Landon Liudahl had the one carry for 73 yards and a TD. Joel Koenecke had 11 carries for 59 yards and a touchdown. Fisher Marberg scored two touchdowns on the day.
The Royals defense had 25 players who made at least one tackle. They recorded four sacks and had a forced fumble and an interception. The six points allowed was the third game in a row where they have allowed seven or less points, and the defense has allowed just 88 points total in seven conference games this season.
The game of the season will be next week when the Bethel University Royals travel down Snelling Avenue to take on St. Thomas. The winner of this game will likely advance to the NCAA Division-III playoffs while the loser’s season will be over. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:10.
By Robert Pannier
Featured Image Courtesy of Carl Schmuland/Bethel University Football