Decorah native Robby Jewell works against the Central player. Jewell had two solo and two assisted tackles. (Photos by Rick Fromm)
Central College (3-4, 2-2 IIAC) scored the first 21 points en route to a 31-14 victory over the Luther football team (0-7, 0-4 IIAC) Saturday in Carlson Stadium.
The Dutch produced 396 yards of total offense while holding the Norse to 209. Luther also turned the football over five times, which included four interceptions and a fumble. Two of the interceptions led to Central scores in first half and two stopped Norse drives in the fourth quarter.
A Luther fumble on the Central 5-yard line midway through the third quarter was perhaps the play of the game.
With the Dutch leading 24-14 and facing a fourth and 19 on their own 35-yard line, Zac Pearson blocked the Central punt and was picked up by Aric Elton, who raced to the end zone. He was taken down on the 5-yard line. On Luther's first play, Central's Danny Samson knocked the ball loose, which was recovered by Jack Shipley on the 19-yard line. The first-and-goal proved to be the closest the Norse would get to the Dutch end zone in the second half.
Defensively, four Norse tallied double digit tackle totals. Trent Kerrigan was credited with a game high 16. He was followed by James Knutson with 14 while both Matt Mitz and Dan Wheelock had 10 each. Bitz, Colin White and Elton were all credited with a sack.
Tyler Holmlund carried the load in the running game. Holmlund rushed for 45 yards of Luther's 90 yards on the ground.
"Trent Kerrigan, James Knutson, Matt Bitz and Dan Wheelock did a great job on defense today," stated Head Coach Mike Durnin. "I was also pleased with Tyler Holmlund, who made the most of every carry he was handed the football."
"While I believe the players competed the entire game, any time you turn the ball over five times you are going to have a difficult time being successful. We also needed to take advantage and come away with points after the blocked punt."
Saturday Luther travels to Buena Vista University, with kickoff at 1 p.m.