The Benedictine Football team defeated conference opponent Concordia University-Wisconsin 51-49 over the weekend in Mequon, Wisconsin. The game gives the Eagles a fourth straight victory and a 2-0 conference record.
“It was a great experience for our team to overcome a lot of adversity,” said Head Coach Josiah Sears, “We won and that is most important, it’s good to have that experience and hopefully grow as a team.”
The game was a battle of high powered offenses as both teams combined for 1200 yards of offense and 100 points. The Eagles held an early advantage jumping to a 16-0 lead in the first quarter off of two touchdown passes from Junior Quarterback Ryan Sample to Senior Wide Receiver Elijah Walker before the Falcons got on the board. The Eagles extended their lead early in the second quarter with another Sample to Walker connection to make the score 24-7. The teams then exchanged two long touchdowns before the Falcons rattled off 21 consecutive points to take a 35-31 lead over the Eagles into the half.
In the second half, the defenses stood strong not allowing any scoring through the quarter highlighted by two fourth down stops by the Eagles defense. The fourth quarter saw the offenses come back to life as each team put points on the board. Junior Running Back Derrick Miles started the scoring with a short touchdown early in the quarter before the Falcons offense put up a quick score to match.
A screen pass to Senior Running Back JaVon McBride gave the Eagles the 45-42 advantage with just over five minutes left in the game. Concordia would not give up as they scored a touchdown to take the 49-45 lead with 1:41 left in the game. The Eagles would then drive over 70 yards, including a 47 yard pass to Walker on fourth down, to score the game-winning touchdown on another Sample to McBride screen pass with 34 seconds left in the game.
“As a team in our minds there was never any doubt we were going to win the game,” said Sample who broke the Benedictine team records for touchdowns and passing yards in a single game, “That is the mentality you need to have if you want to be successful.”
The win sets up a crucial matchup for the Eagles on Saturday as they play conference foe Lakeland College at the Lisle Sports Complex for Homecoming. The matchup will go a long way in determining who wins the conference title as both teams have won the past two conference championships with Lakeland winning last year and Benedictine winning in 2014.
“It’s going to be an exciting week obviously,” said Sears, “They’re a good team they beat us last year so I think there is going to be more focus and attention to detail from our team this week to win.”