Late comeback not enough for Vikings

Andy York

The Lawrence University football team climbed to within a touchdown of Beloit twice, but couldn’t get over the hump in a 48-35 MWC loss for Lawrence. The Vikings have dropped to 1-4 since winning their first game.The Vikings got off to a slow start and were behind by three touchdowns before the end of the first quarter. They went interception, punt, punt on their first three drives, and the Buccaneers answered each one with a touchdown, making it 21-0. A four-yard Adrell Bullock touchdown with 22 seconds left in the first quarter cut the lead to 21-6, but LU’s kicking woes continued with another missed extra point.

Beloit’s rushing attack scored again on their next drive, making it 28-6. The Buccaneers ran for an amazing 501 yards against LU, with their leading rusher Lee Rankinen running for 250, and two other ‘backs had over 100.

After the game’s second Eric Aspenson interception, LU struck again as Joe VanderZanden scooped up a Beloit fumble and took it back 63 yards for a score to cut the lead to 28-12. The two-point conversion was good and it was 28-14. Another long Beloit drive made it 35-14 at the half.

After trading sloppy drives in the third quarter, LU finally struck first. Aspenson strung together a good series of passes, and Aaron Walker had a 19-yard run to set up his one-yard TD plunge to cut the lead to 35-21. A fumble on the ensuing kickoff gave LU the chance it needed, and they answered right away. Aspenson found Nick Korn for a 21-yard strike and the lead was just seven, but LU couldn’t get over that final hump.

Two LU facemask penalties gave Beloit extra yards, and with their powerful running attack, they took the first drive of the fourth quarter in for a touchdown to make it 42-28. LU came right back as Adrell Bullock took over and gained 25 yards on a drive that ended with a three-yard touchdown, his second of the game, to cut the lead once again to a touchdown at 42-35.

But alas, it was not to be. Beloit answered right back again, and scored what would be the final points. Beloit 48, LU 35.

Walker had 87 yards rushing and Bullock added 45 for the Vikings. Their next game will be at MWC leading St. Norbert. The Vikings have not defeated the Green Knights since 1997. Game time is 1:30 in De Pere.