St. Scholastica smothers MLC 62-19

NEW ULM – Martin Luther College lost its Homecoming game to St. Scholastica 62-19 in an Upper Midwest Athletic Conference football game on Saturday.

St. Scholastica (4-1, 4-0 UMAC) scored on its opening possession driving the ball 91 yards on five plays. MLC’s Jacob Zietlow’s kickoff was picked up and returned from inside the 10-yard line of St. Scholastica. A 21-yard return was nulled after an illegal block by the receiving team.

The Saints answered a third time after Nate Stein fumbled the football for the Knights (0-5, 0-4). The fumble was recovered by the Saints’ Nick Jerhoff and carried to inside the the Knights’ 2-yard line on a tackle by Josh Wong. The Saints pushed it in on the next play making the score 21-0.

The Knights’ Nate Lindloff fumbled the following kick return, giving St. Scholastica a first-and-10 at the opposing 30-yard line. One pass play later the Saints led 27-0 on a failed PAT attempt to end the first quarter.

“You can’t turn the ball over against a good football team and hope to be successful. That is a mistake we made,” MLC coach Mark Stein said.

T.J. Babinec scored from 1 yard out for MLC’s first score of the game on a 19-play, 56-yard drive. But Ben Balge missed the PAT to make it 27-6.

MLC’s defense had a huge following drive as received a turnover on downs inside its 12-yard line with 7:48 left in the half.

“When you have a big stop we have to be able to convert that and we didn’t,” Mark Stein said.

St. Scholastica reached the end zone one more time during the half, also ending with 11 penalties for 97 yards.

MLC opened the second half with a 10-play, 66-yard drive, lasting 4:37. Babinec kept the ball for another 1-yard rush into the end zone for the Knights. Stein converted on third-and-6 with a 16-yard carry during the drive.

Nate Stein finished the scoring for MLC with a 21-yard touchdown run. The Knights’ drive was given an extra push form a pass interference, putting the ball on the Saints’ 21.

“[Nate Stein] is a hard worker, for a freshman who has never played in this offense before, he picked it up and has done well,” Mark Stein said.

Leading MLC was Nate Stein with 112 yards from 17 carries and one touchdown. He did not have a carry for negative yards during the game. Babinec had 6-for-15 passing with two rushing touchdowns.

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