The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

November 16, 2013

Mavericks finish up with record performance

FAYETTE, IOWA — The top-rated Minnesota State football team secured its second straight undefeated regular season and set a program record for points in a 73-7 victory over Upper Iowa in a Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference football game Saturday.

Minnesota State (11-0) has now won 22 straight Northern Sun games to claim its second consecutive conference championship. The Mavericks set the single-game scoring record with 73 points, breaking the old mark of 70 set in 2007 against Peru State and matched last season against Upper Iowa.

"I was thinking before the game about all the winter conditioning and spring ball and fall practice, how hard these guys have worked to put themselves in position to play for a conference championship," coach Aaron Keen said. "We wanted the guys to enjoy the moment and not think too far ahead and take care of business."

The Mavericks scored touchdowns on their first 10 drives. Minnesota State accumulated 633 yards of offense, with 526 yards rushing, missing that program record by 11 yards.

"This is the fifth straight game where we've really gotten out of the gate strong, in all three phases," Keen said. "I was really happy with our defense, That was a team that had generated a lot of offense, especially rushing, and the defense really limited their opportunities."

Senior quarterback Jon Wolf finished with a career-high 201 rushing yards and scored two touchdowns. Sophomore quarterback Mitch Brozovich rushed for four touchdowns, and sophomore running back Chad Zastrow rushed for a career-high 162 yards with one touchdown.

Wolf completed 5 of 8 passes for 77 yards, with senior Dennis Carter getting a team-high 53 yards receiving.

"Jon Wolf was unbelievable today, running the football," Keen said. "He bailed us out of some tough situations with his ability to scramble. He was on a different level than most of the people on the field."

The Minnesota State defense limited Upper Iowa to minus-2 yards rushing yards and 161 passing yards. Sophomore Evan Koehler led the Mavericks' defense with six tackles. The Mavericks had three turnovers as sophomore Gabe Wolfe and senior Diontae Jones each recovered a fumble and junior Nathan Hancock recorded his fifth interception of the season.

Minnesota State will learn its postseason fate at 4 p.m. today during the NCAA Selection Show.

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