Football beaten by Ripon

Erik Borresen

The Lawrence football team traveled to face Ripon College last Saturday in the Vikings’ ninth game of the season.
The Red Hawks scored first on a 24-yard scamper by junior running back Josh Pasek 11 minutes into the game. Shortly after the second quarter commenced, Ripon drove the ball the full length of the field on a 10-play, four-minute drive that ultimately set up a short run by Appleton native Matt Schmalzer to make the score 14-0.
However, the Vikings struck back on the next possession with a seven-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Nick Maxam to wide receiver Nate Nelson to cut the Red Hawk lead to seven with 11 minutes left in the half.
With 6:44 left in the half, Vikings running back Ben Hartmann fumbled the ball, which was returned 32 yards for a touchdown by Ripon’s Joe Faulds to put the Red Hawks up by 14 points. The Vikings were able to score again before the half ended on a 25 yard field goal by Cody Robel, leaving the score 21-10 at halftime.
Neither team would score in the first twelve minutes of the third quarter, but with 2:39 left on the clock, Ripon’s T. J. Pierce scored on a four-yard run to put the Red Hawks up 18 points with the first three quarters almost finished.
The Vikings continued to fight despite being down by three scores with only a quarter to play. Maxam led the Vikings on a 10-play, 69-yard drive bridging the third and fourth quarters and leading to a one-yard touchdown run by Jeremiah Johnson. The score remained 28-17 until the last minute of the game, when the Ripon scored twice on a rushing touchdown and a pick-six.
The Red Hawks missed their chance to score 14 points in 14 seconds when kicker Jacob Gahart missed his final extra point try of the game, but Ripon’s 41-17 win improved the squad’s record to 7-2 in conference play.
The Vikings will travel to face Minnesota-Morris in their final game of the season Saturday. Senior defensive lineman John Buntrock promised that the Vikings will “not only beat Minnesota-Morris, but [they] will tear their hearts out and eat them for dinner.”
The Vikings hope to notch a victory with the same ease as they did last year, when a 21-13 defeat of UM-Morris was the Vikings’ only win.