"You'll never get ahead if you don't take care of what you have." - Doris Waddell, RIP

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn
The multi-ethnic building was the original home of the music department at UMM. (B.W. photo)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cougars aiming to turn barge around

The Cougar defense converges on a Northwestern ballcarrier in the 10/1 game. (Photos by B.W.)
Danny Kernan aims to zip upfield after making a catch in the Homecoming game. Danny is a UMM sophomore from Minneapolis (Southwest High).
Garrett Mensing, junior runningback from Blue Earth, turns on the jets at Big Cat Stadium. The big Homecoming crowd is seen in the background.

The Cougars hit some snags in mid-season play. Their two wins to start the season didn't set the tone for what followed, as it turned out.
The Cougars aim to finally get the barge turned around this Saturday, Oct. 15, when Eureka comes here. Hopefully the weather will be pleasant for the 1 p.m. kickoff at Big Cat Stadium.
Playing at home will be a pleasure after traveling all the way to Missouri for the 10/8 game. The Cougars put up a game effort but were stopped in the 27-14 final, at the hands of Westminster.
Turnovers were a major angle in understanding this game. UMM had six, and two of these led directly to Westminster scores.
The Cougars made the long trip back pondering their 2-4 record, 2-3 in the UMAC, and how to get that barge (of frustration) turned around.
The turnover bugaboo was in the form of three fumbles and three interceptions. Westminster returned one of each for touchdowns.
The turnovers negated the sheen of a quite productive UMM offense. In fact the Cougars outgained the Blue Jays 279 yards to 189.
The defense too won decent grades. The 'D' allowed just two scores by the host's offense. The 'D' put Westminster in position to punt eight times.
There was a sour note early in the game as UMM fumbled the football in its opening possession. This was the fumble the Blue Jays recovered and returned for a touchdown. There was no further scoring in the first quarter.
The Cougars fought to get the score tied, driving 64 yards in nine plays, the last of which a 27-yard pass that had Ted Hoffman throwing and Brendon Foss catching.
The Hoffman-to-Foss connection worked again to get UMM's second touchdown on the board. This was a 13-yard scoring hookup and it capped a seven-play, 63-yard Cougar thrust.
The Blue Jays recovered to score on an eight-play, 63-yard drive that got the score tied at 14-all. They began seizing the momentum with a late third quarter touchdown.
The Cougars' late hopes were punctured when a promising drive ended in an interception, an interception that was returned "all the way." The fans in Missouri could react with delight. For the Cougars, it just made for a little longer ride home.
Brendon Foss, a former Hancock Owl, had quite the day receiving with six catches for nearly 100 yards and two touchdowns.
Hoffman was one of three Cougars throwing the passes. He was joined by Derrick Foss and Daniel Garrigan. Leandro Dower was productive carrying the football as always, on this day gaining 130 net yards on 22 carries. Justin Irlbeck had a carry good for 23 yards.
The first day of October saw the University of Minnesota-Morris host Northwestern for the 2011 Homecoming.
UMM took the early lead, driving 80 yards in eleven plays to score on their first possession (after the opening kickoff). Dower carried the football in from the six.
But Northwestern scored a touchdown on each of its three first half possessions, driving 54, 69 and 70 yards. These had a backbreaking effect, and UMM went on to lose 45-13.
Derrick Foss scored on a one-yard plunge in the fourth quarter.
Former MAHS Tiger Cody Hickman had 12 tackles including five solo stops. Christopher Coromelas from Anaheim, CA, produced eleven tackles.
Northwestern outdid the Cougars in total yardage 504-261.
Derrick Foss completed 12 of 20 passes for 138 yards. Brendon Foss had five catches.
The Cougars' September 24 assignment was to play St. Scholastica in Duluth. Brendon Foss had a huge day against the Saints with 12 catches for 144 yards and a touchdown. Derrick Foss threw for 155 yards and Garrigan for 102, but the Saints summoned a stronger attack and defeated UMM 44-19.
The Saints built the advantage in total yards 444-350.
Let's get the barge turned around! A big fan turnout at Big Cat Stadium would be a delight to see.
UMM football has been blessed by good weather for 2011 home games thus far.
Click on the link below to review the Cougars' first three games of the season:

UMM fans would love to say "eureka!" in celebration of a win.
- Brian Williams - morris mn Minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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