Football reigns over Crown College on way to third win

By Nate Wilson-Traisman

After dropping five straight games, Macalester rebounded by setting school records in total yards (671) and plays (95), in a 62-42 rout of Crown College. The Scots also came up one point shy of the Macalester points record in Saturday’s high-powered offensive attack. The win improved Macalester’s record to 3-5 on the season.The offense was sparked by running back Jake McDonnell ’10, who returned from a four-game absence caused by cracked vertebrae. McDonnell reached the end zone six times and collected 364 yards from scrimmage, both school marks.

“The offense as a unit did extremely well. We were assignment sound and played with great effort,” McDonnell said.

The Scots got off to a bit of a rough start, allowing a kickoff return for a touchdown on the opening kick. After trailing 28-13 early in the second quarter, Macalester’s offense exploded, scoring six touchdowns on their next six possessions.

“In terms of record, it was an enormous win for us,” Head Coach Glenn Caruso said.
The win snapped a five game slide for Macalester, in a season riddled with injuries to key players. In addition to McDonnell’s injury, quarterback Nick Slobe ’10 will miss the remainder of the season due to an injured neck.

With Slobe out, the Scots have turned to rookie quarterback, Trevor Miehe ’11, who is just one of many young contributors to the squad. The Scots’ relative inexperience combined with the absence of a key playmaker in McDonnell was evident during the skid. In the five losing efforts prior to Saturday, Macalester was outscored by its opponents 177-55.

Caruso was quick to note that despite the consecutive losses, the Scots’ season has still been a success, especially considering they have already eclipsed last year’s win total of two.

“We’re only in year two of our transition,” Caruso said.

Progress was evident in Miehe’s performance versus Crown, as he recorded the best game of his young Macalester career.

Miehe tossed three touchdowns and collected 190 yards through the air, while completing 16 of 27 passes.

“Trevor has shown amazing poise for a freshman and he has been managing the offense well,” McDonnell said. “Our whole team has been playing with unbelievable effort and resolve.”

Seniors Jakub Koziol and Jeff Wankel added healthy contributions to the Scots’ rushing attack. Koziol carried the ball 13 times for 122 yards, and Wankel added 78 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries. The Scots collected a total of 481 yards on the ground, shattering the previous team record of 393.

Despite McDonnell’s record-breaking day, it was Koziol who was awarded the game’s MVP.
“It was the best game I’ve ever seen the kid play,” Caruso said of Koziol. “He did a great job blocking.”

Crown’s offense was led by quarterback Matthew Bremer ’08, who threw for 244 yards and three scores in the defeat.

Macalester looks to pick up where it left off this Saturday, as the Scots wrap up their season at home versus Lawrence University (4-4). A win would be the Scots’ fourth on the season, doubling last year’s total.

“Yes, we’re better than last year, but this [Lawrence game] will give us an indication of how much better we are,” Caruso said.