SEWARD, Neb. – The Concordia passing game poked holes in the Morningside defense for 319 yards, but it wasn’t nearly enough. The Bulldog Football team failed to halt the Mustang offensive machine on senior day Saturday (Nov. 7) inside Bulldog Stadium. The Mustangs piled up 654 total yards while rolling to a 56-22 victory.
Fourth-year Head Coach Patrick Daberkow’s squad has run the gauntlet in playing Northwestern, Dordt and Morningside in consecutive games. Concordia (4-3) managed to score first on Saturday before quarterback Joe Dolincheck and the villains from Sioux City took over.
“We didn’t perform well enough to beat the No. 1 team in the country,” Daberkow said. “When you make some of the mistakes we made today, they’ll make you pay. We saw that play out. We’re not where we want to be yet as a program. Today was a measuring stick for gauging where we’re at. We still have a lot to play for. We want to get win No. 5 and so we’re going to focus on Midland pretty soon.”
Bulldog quarterback Blake Culbert threw for 279 yards and a touchdown while often finding the likes of Art Anderson (six catches for 102 yards and a touchdown), Korrell Koehlmoos (four catches for 74 yards) and Garrett Schardt (four catches for 65 yards and a touchdown). Schardt made a key 55-yard reception on a third-and-seven on Concordia’s opening possession that went for six. Jonah Weyand capped the 75-yard drive with a three-yard touchdown run.
But it’s a real chore trying to match the firepower deployed by the Mustangs (7-0), 2018 and 2019 NAIA national champions. Dolincheck went 30-for-37 for 442 yards and three touchdowns through the air while Arnijae Ponder rushed for 157 yards and three touchdowns on 26 carries. Reid Jurgensmeier (131) and Zach Norton (115) both went over 100 receiving yards on the day. Morningside has won 50-straight conference games.
Anderson is a playmaker who has been missing from the lineup for much of 2020. The San Antonio native added another threat to the Bulldog offense on Saturday.
Said Daberkow, “It was good to have Art back. It’s been a long, weird season for a lot of us, but especially for Art Anderson. He’s really come on strong. You could see that in practice this week. I was really proud of him on how he performed today. He’s a matchup problem.”
The Mustangs may have some leaks in their secondary, but they are quite sturdy against the run. Concordia managed only 30 rushing yards on 27 attempts. Weyand (17 rushes for 37 yards) was frequently fighting off tacklers at the line of scrimmage. Morningside defensive lineman Niklas Gustav (two sacks on Saturday) is a particularly tough assignment.
Sixteen Bulldog seniors were recognized prior to kickoff. That group includes All-American linebacker Lane Napier. The bye week seemed to energize Napier, who has had to play through injuries in 2020. He led the way with 17 stops to bring his career total to 387 tackles.
Napier and company spent a lot of time chasing around the talented Mustang skill players. Morningside did not have to punt a single time on Saturday. One of the only miscues of the day for the Mustangs came when Dolincheck had a third-quarter pass intercepted by Concordia defensive back Jayzen Armstrong. The Bulldog defense also got 10 tackles from linebacker Striling Tonniges.
The Bulldogs will be on the road for their final two games of 2020. They will go head-to-head with Midland (5-3) in Fremont next Saturday (Nov. 14) for a 1 p.m. CT kickoff at Heedum Field. Concordia will attempt to knock off the Warriors for the first time since 2017 (Midland won meetings in 2018 and 2019). Head Coach Jeff Jamrog’s squad picked up a win at Doane, 28-3, on Saturday.
Concordia Football vs Morningside https://t.co/3D7GQ0xls4
— 104.9 Max Country (@1049maxcountry) November 8, 2020