Warriors Can't Contain Muskies In NACC Opener

Warriors Can't Contain Muskies In NACC Opener

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. - The Wisconsin Lutheran College football team was held to just 65 total yards and couldn't stop Lakeland's high-octane offense in a 47-7 rout in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference opener Saturday afternoon at Taylor Field.

WHERE THEY STAND

  • The Warriors fell to 1-3 and 0-1 in the NACC, while the Muskies improved to 1-3 with a 1-0 mark in conference play.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • On Lakeland's second possession of the game, quarterback A.J. Veloz connected with Kezlow Smith on a 79-yard touchdown strike.
  • Following an interception late in the opening period, the Muskies scored on Veloz's one-yard touchdown run to make it 12-0 with 3:13 remaining in the first.
  • WLC earned favorable field position at its own 44-yard line or better on each of its first five drives, but could only muster one first down in the opening half, coming on a Lakeland offsides penalty.
  • Early in the second quarter the Muskies went on an eight-play, 82-yard drive, capped by a 24-yard touchdown run by Kendrick Burks to push the lead to 20-0 after a successful two-point conversion.
  • Later in the quarter, the Warriors were forced to punt from deep in their own end, and Lakeland took advantage of the short field to score on a 4th and Goal touchdown pass from Veloz to Hunter Van Stratten to take a 26-0 lead into halftime.
  • The Warriors moved deep into Muskies' territory to start the second half, but turned the ball over on a fumble by Mike Reeves (Hoffman Estates, Ill./Hoffman Estates). 
  • Veloz hit Michael Esiobu for a 29-yard touchdown with 5:50 remaining in the third quarter. 
  • WLC's first play of the next drive was a pick-six for Lakeland, as Yaphay Harvey took Anthony Rodriguez's (Kissimmee, Fla./Gateway) pass the other way for a 32-yard touchdown. It was Harvey's second interception of the day.
  • Lakeland took a 47-0 lead on a nine-yard touchdown throw from Michael Whitley to Richard Micheaux late in the third quarter.
  • Gino DeGeorge (Las Vegas, Nev./Faith Lutheran) scored the lone touchdown for WLC on a 15-yard touchdown run with 7:37 left in the game.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

  • Lakeland picked up 20 first downs while holding WLC to just four on the day. The Warriors were also outgained 428-65 yards and committed four turnovers while forcing none.
  • The Forest Green and White dropped to 2-6 in the all-time series against Lakeland, and remained winless at Taylor Field with an 0-5 mark.
  • DeGeorge was 5-for-12 passing with 41 yards, an interception, and the rushing touchdown, while Rodriguez was 4-for-11 for 11 yards and an interception for WLC. Theo Belhomme (Kissimmee, Fla./Gateway) led the Warriors with three catches for 25 yards and Reeves gained 24 yards on 11 carries.
  • Tanner Behnke (Brillion, Wis./Brillion) recorded a team-high 10 tackles. Jestin Heimbruch (Manawa, Wis./Little Wolf) registered nine tackles and two tackles for a loss. 
  • Veloz completed 16 of 28 passes for 250 yards and three scores. Smith hauled in four passes for 130 yards and a touchdown and Burks piled up 94 yards and a score on 14 rushes.
  • Trevor Tanck powered the Muskies' defense with 10 tackles and four tackles for a loss, including one sack.

UP NEXT

  • The Warriors host Benedictine (1-3, 0-0 NACC) next Saturday at 1 p.m. at Raabe Stadium on Hall of Fame Day, as the inaugural eight-member hall of fame class will be officially inducted. Live audio coverage begins with the pregame show at 12:30 on wlcsports.com.