On a chilly day at the Paul C. Findorff Athletic Complex, the Central Lakes College Raiders football team sent the Minnesota West Bluejays south to Worthington for the winter.
The Raiders held the Bluejays to just 129 yards of total offense (minus-16 yards passing thanks to sacks) to shut out Minnesota West 35-0 in CLC's final home game.
"We had them on the run pretty much the whole game," CLC head coach Mike Degen said. "We hadn't won at home this year and it was nice to put the total package -- offense, defense and special teams -- all in one."
It was a defensive lineman's dream. Sophomore Mike Munsterteiger recorded one of seven CLC sacks and blocked a punt into the end zone, recovering the ball for a touchdown.
"This is my first touchdown ever," Munsterteiger said. "Well, since seventh or eighth grade."
The play is designed for Munsterteiger to take on the blocker, allowing a linebacker to sneak through the line. After the blocker went after the linebacker, Munsterteiger slipped through to make the play.
"It's a pretty good feeling," he said. "Unexpected, for sure."
Not to be outdone, fellow defensive lineman Dustin Moilanen picked off a pass. On fourth down in the fourth quarter, Minnesota West attempted a desperation halfback pass. Moilanen, twice as big as anyone near the ball, hauled it in and rumbled a few yards for a rare defensive line interception.
The Bluejays' anemic offense was not helped by special teams. Minnesota West averaged just 15.5 yards on six punts, including the block. Another punt attempt resulted in a mishandled snap and a tackle for a loss.
"It goes back to special teams is one-third of the ballgame," Degen said. "Special teams can take an average team and make them very poor on a couple of snaps."
Roderick Warren led the CLC attack, zipping for 106 yards and a 38-yard score on 12 carries. The Raiders rolled to 231 yards on the ground.
"I think the offensive line played well," Degen said. "When any back goes in there and gets yards, it's a tribute to your offensive line."
Thomas Hanley and Shawn Peoples provided CLC's other two scores on the ground and Ronnie Jones hooked up with Brandon Flanders for a score through the air.
Despite being eliminated from playoff contention, the Raiders still have plenty of reason to finish their season strong Saturday at Fergus Falls.
"We're pretty much playing for pride and to get next year's kids more experience and get the sophomores chances to get looks somewhere else," Munsterteiger said. "You can say we're out of the playoffs, but we're playing as hard as anyone else."
"Now we go to Fergus Falls to destroy their hopes," Degen said. "If we beat them, Ridgewater goes to the playoffs."
Minnesota West 0 0 0 0 -- 0
Central Lakes 14 14 7 0 -- 35
CLC-Thomas Hanley 7 run (Phillip Shogren kick) 10:33
CLC-Shawn Peoples 21 run (Shogren kick) 5:08
CLC-Mike Munsterteiger punt block (Shogren kick) 14:02
CLC-Brandon Flanders 7 pass from Ronnie Jones (Shogren kick) 7:45
CLC-Roderick Warren 38 run (Shogren kick) 11:08
First downs -- MW 12, CLC 16
Rushes-yards -- MW 44-145, CLC 41-231
Pass comp-att-int-yards -- MW 5-12-3-(-16), CLC 5-10-0-41
Sacked-yds lost -- MW 7-42, CLC 3-26
Total offense -- MW 129, CLC 272
Fumbles-lost -- MW 2-0, CLC 1-1
Punts-avg -- MW 6-15.5, CLC 3-30.7
Penalties-yards lost -- MW 4-45, CLC 7-70
Rushing -- MW: Adam Pigoti 5-23, Mark Hickman 27-99, Aaron Johnson 3-15, Matt Reinke 9-14, Clinton Pierce 1-(-6); CLC: Warren 12-106, Scott Imgrund 12-44, Thomas Hanley 4-13, Shawn Peoples 9-56, Jones 1-15, Mike Stanek 1-(-1), Adam Guderian 2-(-2).
Passing (Comp-att-int-yds) -- MW: Johnson 4-9-1-(-23), Pierce 1-1-0-11, Reinke 0-1-1-0, Brad Bosacker 0-1-1-(-4); CLC: Jones 5-10-0-47, Stanek 0-0-0-(-6).
Receiving -- MW: Dustin Headrick 3-20, Hickman 1-(-5), Darren Tietz 1-11; CLC: Joel Anderson 1-35, Imgrund 2-15, Flanders 1-7, Ryan Muldoon 1-10.
Conference -- CLC 1-2. Overall -- CLC 3-5. Next game -- CLC at Fergus Falls Saturday 1:30 p.m.
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