Cru tackles vital victory
For their first time playing in Iowa, the Crusader football team played its best ball game of the season. In the first round play of the Division III National Championships postgame, UMHB defeated the Central College Dutch with an intense final score of 42-40.
With this win, the Cru continued their winning streak of the season with a 10-1 record and also advanced to the second round of NCAA postseason play for the sixth year in a row.
Head Coach Pete Fredenburg said the team’s success is a result of the players’ growing maturity.
“Every year that you start a new season, you just see guys grow and step up. New guys take the old guys’ places,” he said. “We are just so excited to be in. It’s really going to be neat to be able to go to different places.”
Fredenburg always has his mind on the game; however, he really wants to take a chance to appreciate where the team is and where they are going for future games.
“What a great experience for all of us,” he said. “That’s what is cool. To be able to go to see other parts of the country and different schools…it’s fun.”
In Iowa, the guys played to win. The Cru were in the lead 28-14 at the half.
With about five minutes remaining in the third quarter, running back Quincy Daniels stretched the Crusader lead to 35-14 with a two-yard touchdown run.
The Dutch would not allow that touchdown to go unanswered.
In about four minutes, the Central College quarterback, Nate Sneed, would throw two touchdown passes, shaving the Cru lead to 35-27. Going for the extra-point kick, UMHB’s Brenson Bristow made a block.
On a high with the blocked kick, the Cru fought back with a 71-yard drive up the field, ending with a touchdown pass from quarterback LiDarrel Bailey to receiver Brian Scott, giving the Cru a 42-27 lead.
With just 6:39 to play in the fourth quarter, the Dutch scored a touchdown.
With a fumble by UMHB’s quarterback, Bailey, the Dutch recovered the ball on their own 31-yard line, and with several good plays, Central College scored a touchdown cutting the lead to 42-40.
Central College then went for the two-point conversion. Passing the ball to a Dutch receiver, the ball was batted away by UMHB defensive lineman, Brett Parker, only to be hit right back into the arms of the Dutch quarterback,
Sneed. Sneed scrambled to get the ball away to tie the game but was overcome by the Crusader defense.
Though the score was still 42-40, the Dutch had one last chance to win the game with an onside kick; however, they were offside on the play. With
that penalty, they had one more shot at the onside kick, but Pi’Dadro Davis secured that catch and sealed the win for the Cru.
With this win, the team thinks the Stagg Bowl could be closer. Though he is injured this season, running back Peyton Price enjoys watching his teammates accomplish what they deserve.
“I have very strong feelings that we will go to the Stagg Bowl this year,” he said. “The team has great leadership and more camaraderie than I have seen in a long time.”
Linebacker Jeremy Salinass is happy to be in the NCAA postseason play.
“My hope (was) just to get in,” he said. “From there we can show people that we belong there (NCAA play).”
The Cru advanced to the second round against Linfield College in McMinnville, Ore.
The Wildcats are 10-0 this season, and this will be the first time the two teams will face each other since Linfield beat the Cru in the 2004 Almos
Alonzo Stagg Bowl.
The NCAA postseason game will kick off Nov. 28 at 2 p.m in McMinnville, Ore.