Oct 23rd, 2010 @ 6:28 pm | Author: Vikings sports info
Vikings Knock Off Comets, Look to Jimmies

By Ryan Cunningham NewsDakota.com

October 23

Valley City--The Vikings wasted no time breaking big plays and the spirits of the Comets Saturday.

Valley City State scored on their first possession, recorded a first-quarter safety, and had 15 points in 12 minutes in a 36-6 win over Mayville State Saturday at Jerome Berg Field in Mayville.

The day was marked by big Viking plays in the first half, and high emotions boiling over in the second half, as the Vikings won their second straight game and improved to 3-5 overall, 2-4 in Dakota Athletic Conference (DAC) play.

Derek Elliot (So., Valley City, ND) continued to show his big play capability, using a 42 yard reception to set up a score, and a 62 yard run to set up another, along with a 14 yard scoring run of his own.

Receiver Nick Schoenecker (RFr., Watkins, MN) backed up his three touchdown day last week with a diving catch for a score, and Jordan Backstrom (Jr., Maddock, ND) sparked the offense on it's opening drive of the game.

The Comets had the first threat, however, with Dominique Bradley (Fr., Spring Valley, CA) returning the opening kickoff to the Viking 42. After a 17 yard run by Mitch Ford (So., Cavalier, ND), the Comets were on the doorstep of scoring the first points.

The Viking defense responded by dropping Ford for consecutive losses, with the drive stalling, and the Vikings taking over at their own four.

Two holding penalties complicated the drive, but Backstrom ripped off 72 yards on screen, sprinting to the house on the eighth play of the opening drive for a 6-0 Viking lead.

Valley City State recovered an improvised onside kick, and drove deep, but a touchdown catch was called back on an offensive pass interference call by LeTheo Proctor (So., Anchorage, AK). The drive looked to end with no points.

The punt would be the scoring play for the Vikings. Bradley, who returned a punt for a score against Jamestown College the week before, received the Viking punt at the Comet three, was hit, then retreated into the endzone looking for running room.

Bradley was hit again, and fumbled intentionally to avoid the safety. A Comet recovered, but the Vikings scored the two-pointer for an 8-0 lead with 6:06 left of the first quarter.

A free kick by Carpenter left the Vikings at their own 47, and Schoenecker made the highlight reel by laying out for a catch, landing on the front pylon for a 37-yard strike, pushing the Vikings to a 15-0 edge with 3:50 left.

After a Comet stall, Valley City State used Elliot for another score. Starting at their own 48, Trent Kosel (Sr., Edgeley, ND) would hit Elliot for a 42 yard screen, and two plays later, Elliot picked his way through the middle for a 14-yard scoring run. The Vikings led 22-0 at the break.

Elliot broke off a 62-yard run on the first possession of the second half, with Andy Derilus (Sr., Miami, FL) scoring the first of his two touchdowns on a nine-yard run a play later. Derilus ran seven times, covering 34 yards on a Viking drive late in the game, with a one-yarder capping the drive.

The lone Comet score came after a Viking fumble by John Wingo (Fr., Colorado Springs, Co) was recovered by Mayville State at the Viking 28. Tanner Carpenter (Jr., Pembina, ND) hit Taylor Kunkel (Fr., Grangeville, ID) for an eight-yard score with 12.7 seconds left.

Travelling trophies

The Vikings retained possession of the Mayor's Cup, the travelling trophy played for between the two schools each year.

Valley City State also has the edge in the President's Cup basketball series. The cup is played for by the two schools' mens and womens basketball programs. Whichever school wins the four-game basketball series receives the President's Cup.

Should the series be split, the football game is used as a tie-breaker.

Next week is also a travelling trophy game for the Vikings, as they travel to Jamestown to face the Jamestown College Jimmies. The teams traditionally play for the Paint Bucket.

The Jimmies knocked off Dakota State on Saturday, guaranteeing that the Vikings and the Jimmies will finish with the fifth and sixth seeds in the DAC between the two teams. Technically, that situation sets up back-to-back weeks between the Jimmies and Vikings.

The DAC Bowl, the final jamboree of DAC teams, matches the fifth and sixth seeds. Since the Vikings and Jimmies play next week, and their seeds dictate they play again the week after, they could meet for the Paint Bucket twice.

However, Viking head football coach Dennis McCulloch says the DAC has provisions on how to prevent teams from meeting in back-to-back weeks. Those provisions may or may not be used.