The Doane College football team continues to bounce back from its opening loss to Friends University.
The Tigers beat Northwestern College 34-27 and then on Saturday dismantled Hastings College 62-7. The Tigers scored five times after Bronco miscues, three by the defense.
“There are still things we’re working on and need to improve, but we are happy with where we are at,” coach Matt Franzen said. “We have come back and played really well the last two games.”
The X-factor for the No. 14 Tigers has been their 20 seniors, Franzen said, led by Joe Vetrovsky, Dillon Carmichael and Jeremy Wallace. Franzen said Vetrovsky, from McCook, Neb., is special.
“His sideline demeanor is the best I’ve ever been around, and this is my 18th year of coaching,” Franzen said. “Everything he says is just on point. When people get excited, he’s a calming factor. When people need a kick in the butt, he’s the guy that’s going to do it. He’s great.”
Vetrovsky, Carmichael and Evan Lasauskas lead a strong offensive line. Starter Kenny Boggs, Nate Meier, Alex Dose and Clayton Moore give the Tigers depth at running back.
Sophomore Phil Hamburger is starting at quarterback, but Doane didn’t miss a beat Saturday with backup Phil Thramer. Kicker Jordan Pedersen is 6 for 6 on field goals.
Franzen also likes the effort on defense.
“I think we have the potential to be a playoff team,” he said. “Our mantra is to take it one day at a time.”
Bobcats earn ranking
Peru State coach Steve Schneider was proud of his team’s defense after the Bobcats defeated Graceland 21-7 to raise their record to 3-0. The win earned them a No. 23 ranking, their first appearance in the NAIA Top 25 since 2005.
“The defense beat them down and kept them guessing all day,” he said. “The defense stepped up and hats off to all of them, including Coach (Lou) Varley and Coach (Chuck) Mizerski and the rest of the staff.”
Linebacker Jake Kelley led the team with nine tackles, two solo. He also had a tackle for loss and recovered a fumble. Linebacker Shane Lloyd had five solo and three assisted tackles, which included two sacks for a loss of 14 yards. Lloyd also broke up one pass and forced a fumble.
Lloyd said the defense was well prepared.
“The seniors on the team have shown a lot of leadership, and we are trying to do what it takes to win every game.”
In other football news:
» Dustin Bryant, with 115 yards and two touchdowns, had his second 100-yard game as Nebraska Wesleyan earned its first win, defeating Briar Cliff 31-7 on Saturday.
» After more than a decade’s absence from the NAIA football rankings, Concordia (3-0) is ranked No. 20. The Bulldogs, who beat Midland 35-14 on Saturday, were last ranked No. 22 in September 2002.
» Quarterback Bronson Marsh had 18 carries for 194 yards and three scores in the University of Nebraska at Kearney’s 31-19 loss to NCAA Division II No. 6 Missouri Western on Saturday. The rushing total is the second most by a Loper signal caller, trailing only the 288 yards Jake Spitzlberger ran for in the 2011 opener at Wayne State.
» Redshirt freshman quarterback Zach Osborn completed 10 of 19 passes for 249 yards and three scores and ran for a fourth touchdown in Wayne State’s 41-25 win over Minnesota Crookston, the Wildcats’ first victory.
» No. 21 Chadron State weathered three turnovers, a lost kickoff, missed field goals and several penalties to beat Colorado Mesa 30-24.
“We came out slow (Saturday) and had a lot of things go poorly in the first half,” Chadron coach Jay Long said. “But our guys kept their focus and they worked together, offensively and defensively, to win the game. I couldn’t be more proud of them.”
Middle linebacker Shea Koch finished with 23 tackles, third most in a game in school history.
» The Nebraska Wesleyan volleyball team will try to derail No. 5 Midland (20-0, 2-0) at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Fremont. Wesleyan is 10-1 and 2-1.
» Western Nebraska (20-1) has won 14 straight volleyball matches. Freshman Amanda Schoene said she’s never seen a team with so much hitting talent.
“I think we are getting a lot closer as a team, and that is what is helping us so much with winning,” Schoene said.
» The UNK cross country teams won the college divisions at the Woody Greeno/Nebraska Invitational. The men, ranked eighth in the Central Region, scored 49 points to outdistance 17 other schools. The women scored 50 points, placing seven runners in the top 38.
“The women’s team was outstanding. They want this to be a starting point and not a highlight, though,” UNK coach Brady Bonsall said. “Our women started out near the front and looked like they belonged. A year ago, they weren’t nearly this confident when they put themselves in that same position.”
» Abby Zach has scored nine goals for the College of St. Mary soccer team, which is off to a 7-2 start.
» Annie Benson has been the spark as the Bellevue volleyball team has won 11 straight to raise its record to 18-3 and 4-0 in the MCAC.
» The North Platte Community College (12-4) volleyball team defeated No. 6 Central Community College 15-25, 28-26, 25-22, 19-25, 15-13. The win was a pivotal one for both the Region IX Division No. 1 seed in the postseason tournament and in the race for a Nebraska Community College Athletic Conference crown.
“The game was nerve-racking, exciting and a lot of fun,” freshman Samantha Byrn said.