The Cleveland Clippers were able to slow down Mayer Lutheran’s run game that had been churning out more than 200 yards a game, but that did little to slow down the Crusaders Nov. 5. Quarterback Ty Hoese threw the ball over the field for 240 yards on 12 completions with five touchdowns in the 43-6 win.
“Cleveland put 10 players close to the line of scrimmage and really did a good job of defending our run game,” said coach Dean Aurich. “Our passing game was very effective and kept us moving the ball.”
Hoese was dialing it up early with two touchdown passes in the first half. The junior quarterback found Elijah Jopp for a 46 yard score and Tyler Neitzel for an 8 yard pass to put the Crusaders up 13-0 in the first 12 minutes. In the second quarter, following a 20 yard field goal from Connor Olsen, Hoese connected again with Jopp for a 28 yard score, then hit Teigan Martin for a 25 yard score and Sam Dennis for a 58 yard score. An 86 yard kick return in the second half put the final tally at 43 points for the Crusaders.
Martin had five catches for 82 yards, Jopp had 2 for 74, Dennis had two fro 65, Neitzel had two for 8 and Dylan Nelson had one for 11.
Despite being limited in the ground game, the Crusaders still tallied 100 yards – Dennis (16 carries, 36 yards), Cole Stuedeman (7 – 29), Nelson (6-26) and Jacksen Heil (4-9).
The defense got another stellar effort by allowing only six points and 80 total yards. Jopp led the team in tackles with eight and Hoese had four. Jopp also had a sack, as did Adler Jopp and Chad Heinlein. Andrew Guetzkow and Dennis each had an interception in the win.
The defensive effort was strong despite the team missing their defensive coordinator.
“Coach Zupke, our D coordinator, was unable to be at the game, his wife is recovering from a serious head injury which occurred from a horse-riding accident. Tim and Kelli are in our prayers.”
The Crusaders host Lester Prairie Nov. 12 in the season finale between two unbeaten teams.
“They are a very good football team,” said Aurich. “It may get down to who can handle the cold weather the best.”