The Gustavus Adolphus football team welcomes the Johnnies of Saint John’s University to Lloyd Hollingsworth Field for this afternoon’s Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) match up. Gustavus enters this afternoon’s contest with an overall record of 4–3 and an MIAC mark of 2–3 after falling at the hands of fifth-ranked Bethel by the final score of 41–17 last Saturday in Arden Hills, Minn. Saint John’s brings an overall record of 6–1 and an MIAC mark of 4–1 following a week off last week.
Fans can watch/listen to the Gustavus vs. Saint John’s game through the Gustavus Athletics website by following the link below:
Fans can also keep track of all the action by following along with the live stats, which can be found at the following link:
Scouting The Gusties
The Gustavus football team is coming off a 41–17 loss to fifth-ranked Bethel last Saturday in Arden Hills, Minn. Despite gaining 383 yards of total offense (119 rushing, 264 passing), the most by any team against the Royal defense so far this season, three turnovers proved to be too much for the Gusties to overcome in the loss. Those three turnovers led to 21 Bethel points, seven of which came on a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown by Matt Mehlhorn at the end of the first quarter. The interception return helped the Royals build a 13–10 halftime lead. Bethel went on to score on four of its five possessions in the second half to push on for the 24-point win.
The Gustavus offense was once again paced by the production of running back Jeffrey Dubose. The senior rushed for 83 yards on 23 carries (3.6 ypc) and a touchdown. Quarterback Mitch Hendricks completed 23 of a season-high 43 attempts for 264 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions. His favorite target was wide receiver Matt Boyce, who caught nine passes for 121 yards (13.4 ypc). Fellow receiver George Buchner also caught seven passes for 72 yards (10.3 ypc), including his first career touchdown.
Defensively, the Gusties allowed a season-high 418 total yards (164 rushing, 254 passing). The Royals also converted 9 of 12 third downs and scored on 3 of 4 trips in the red zone. Defensive end Cameron Cropsey led the way with seven tackles (4 solo), one of which went for a loss. Free safety Kellan Euerle followed with six tackles (6 solo) and also recorded an interception, which he returned for 35 yards deep into Bethel territory.
For the season, Gustavus is averaging 30.3 points (5th/MIAC) and 363.7 yards of total offense (5th/MIAC) per contest. Dubose has rushed for 928 yards (2nd/MIAC) and is closing in on a 1,000-yard season for the first time in his career and just the eighth in Gustavus history. His 928 yards have come on 176 carries for an average of 5.3 yards per carry (3rd/MIAC) to go along with 15 touchdowns (1st/MIAC). Through the air, Mitch Hendricks has completed 136 of 221 passes for a completion percentage of 61.5 percent (4th/MIAC). Hendricks has thrown for 1,323 yards (5th/MIAC) and eight touchdowns (6th/MIAC) compared to seven interceptions. In the absence of Phillip Butler, Matt Boyce has emerged as Hendricks’s go-to receiver. Boyce has now hauled in 40 receptions (t-6th/ MIAC) for 445 yards (11.1 ypc) and a pair of touchdowns.
On defense, the Gusties are allowing an average of 21.1 points (5th/MIAC) and 306.3 total yards (2nd/MIAC) per game. Linebacker Joe Haas is once again leading the team in tackles. The senior has amassed 40 tackles (20 solo) through seven games, five of which have gone for losses. Haas has also forced a league- leading three fumbles and recovered another. Cameron Cropsey comes next with 36 tackles (18 solo) and eight tackles for losses. He has also registered 1.5 sacks and has an interception. Cornerback Zach Dilger leads the defensive backfield with three interceptions (t-4th/MIAC) and nine pass break-ups (2nd/MIAC).
Scouting The Johnnies
After being idle last weekend, the Saint John’s football team is most recently coming off a 23–13 victory over Carleton on Oct. 19th in Northfield, Minn. The Johnnies got out to an early 10–0 lead in the first quarter before Carleton came back to take a 13–0 lead early in the third. However, Saint John’s had the answer with a pair of touchdowns to close out the third quarter, which proved to be enough in the 10-point victory.
Saint John’s outgained Carleton in yards of total offense by a tally of 396 (229 rushing, 167 passing) to 259 (38 rushing, 221 passing). The two teams combined for seven turnovers on the afternoon with each throwing three interceptions and Saint John’s committing the only fumble. Johnnie fullback Jakob Certeza led the way on the ground with 118 yards rushing on 28 carries (4.1 ypc), while quarterback Nick Martin rushed for two touchdowns. Martin completed 17 of 28 passes for 167 yards and a touchdown compared to three interceptions in the absence of starter Connor Bruns. Josh Bungum was the top receiver for the Johnnies with seven catches for 52 yards.
So far this season, Saint John’s averages 21.7 points (8th/MIAC) and 361.4 total yards (6th/ MIAC) per game. Running back Sam Sura leads the way for a ground game that ranks seventh in the MIAC, averaging 155.9 yards per game. Sura has carried 93 times in six games for 392 yards and an average of 65.3 yards per game (5th/MIAC). He has also scored six touchdowns. After missing the Carleton game due to injury, quarterback Connor Bruns returns to the starting lineup this afternoon. Bruns has completed 97 of 170 attempts (57.1%) for 1,088 yards (181.3 ypg) and seven touchdowns (7th/MIAC). He has had one of the top receivers in the MIAC to throw to in Josh Bungum. Bungum has hauled in a league- best 59 receptions for 579 yards (5th/MIAC) and an average of 82.7 yards per game (4th/MIAC). He has also scored two touchdowns.
The Johnnie defense has been the strength of Saint John’s so far this season. It is allowing just 15.9 points (2nd/MIAC) and 356.7 total yards (4th/MIAC) per game. However, the Johnnies have had their fair share of struggles against opposing ground games, as they are giving up an average of 152.4 yards per contest (6th/MIAC). Saint John’s is led defensively by Andrew Rose, who has recorded 58 total tackles (5th/MIAC), 33 of which are solo (7th/MIAC). Matt Workman has recorded four sacks (4th/MIAC) to lead the Johhnie pass rush and also leads the MIAC in forced fumbles (3) and fumble recoveries (3). In the secondary, Darryl Williams ranks second in the conference with four interceptions.