Cael Luzum (2) had 61 rushing yards in 14 carries and one touchdown for the Vikings, while QB Briggs Duwe (11) passed for 195 yards and a trio of scores Friday. (Photo by Tami Bohr)
Cael Luzum (2) had 61 rushing yards in 14 carries and one touchdown for the Vikings, while QB Briggs Duwe (11) passed for 195 yards and a trio of scores Friday. (Photo by Tami Bohr)

They did it again.

For the third time in as many weeks, the Decorah football team (3-0, 1-0) found a way to earn a “W” in the closing moments of a game, defeating No. 6 West Delaware (3-1, 0-1) at home Friday night, 31-27.

“Our team came through again in a big way. West Delaware is very talented and huge. We had a little trouble getting off blocks early and tackling a tough quarterback. We were able to get many stops however, and then our offense found ways to convert into touchdowns,” said Coach Pat Trewin. “Both teams knew this was a big game going into it in the conference standings. Having come back from deficits in the first two weeks gave our players the confidence they could do it again.”

The comeback

A Brody Young 35-yard field goal and 9-yard strike from Briggs Duwe to Joseph Bockman gave the Vikings the early 10-0 advantage early in the second quarter.

Following the slow start, West Delaware put up a pair of TDs in the second period to take the 14-10 lead at halftime. Hawk QB Jared Voss bolted from behind his offensive line in West Delaware’s first possession of the second half to take the pigskin to the house for a 67-yard TD to make it 21-10 in favor of the visitors.

With 4:30 left in the third, Duwe fired the ball to a wide open Kody Bodensteiner for a 42-yard TD pass, pulling the Vikings within 21-18. West Delaware maintained a 27-18 lead with one period left to play.

Facing a 9-point deficit, the Vikings went to work setting up heroics from their own 26-yard line, erasing nearly three minutes off the clock. With 8:49 remaining in the contest, Luzum finished off the long drive on a 2-yard bolt through the Hawk defense into the end zone.

Keeping West Delaware from moving the chains too far, the Vikes took over from their own 29-yard line and Duwe quickly went to work, orchestrating the march down the field. Mixing up the air assault versus the ground game and combined with a pair of pass interference penalties, the Vikings swallowed up the yardage. The drive concluded when Duwe hit Luzum a swing pass to the left, allowing him to sprint to the end zone with 1:19 remaining to lift Decorah to the 31-27 victory.

The details

Luzum led Decorah with 61 rushing yards, including the late touchdown run. Carrying the pigskin for 38 yards was Nick Einck.

Duwe finished the night with a trio of passing touchdowns and 195 yards, completing 13 of his 26 passing attempts. On Duwe’s radar were Joseph Bockman for 120 yards in his nine receptions, along with Kody Bodensteiner for two catches for 50 yards.

Defensively it was Keenan Tyler coming up with big stops with seven solo and four assisted tackles. Luzum was there for six solo stops and three assists, while Charlie Robinson provided three solo and four assisted tackles.

“There were times when we could not convert on third down and that made things hard. A few times we were not in the best position to tackle and did not finish tackles. Our defense held them to 25 points under their scoring average and we had many outstanding plays on that side of the ball,” said Coach Trewin. The pride and passion of our seniors was very apparent in the huddle and on the sideline.”

On the road

Decorah will face a familiar opponent as the Vikings go to Waterloo East. The Trojans are 0-3 on the season.