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The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch
  • Knights crush Chargers in football season debut

  •  The Knights honored their lost teammate Payton Adams in a special way on Aug. 28 at home.
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  • St. Mary’s 27,
    MVL 8
     
     The Knights honored their lost teammate Payton Adams in a special way on Aug. 28 at home.
     
    Not only did they dedicate the game to him with “Wear Purple for Payton” Night, but the Knights also had a convincing win over their Tomahawk Conference opponent.
     
    Despite the final score, fans were on the edge of their seat in the first quarter as Minnesota Valley Lutheran played well enough to keep the quarter scoreless. The night started off with a 14-yard kickoff return from senior Jared Rothmeier, and was followed by a defensive offsides which gave St. Mary’s great field position. The Knights had a great opening drive, with senior running back David Surprenant running for 17 yards in the first couple of plays while quarterback Brandon Helget ran for 17 yards of his own. After a successful 18-yard pass from Helget to Rothmeier, senior Jaden Wait ran for 18 yards to put St. Mary’s on the Chargers’ 13-yard line. However, despite a total of three defensive offside penalties from MVL in the drive, the Knights failed to get a final first down and gave up the ball.
     
    After a three-and-out from the Chargers, St. Mary’s had a somewhat-successful drive before having to punt. The punt however, was snapped way over Surprenant’s head for -28 yards which gave MVL even more momentum to score. On third and 10 on St. Mary’s 11 yard line, senior Lucas Heiderscheidt intercepted the ball which stopped the Charger’s momentum and the quarter ended soon after.
     
    In the second, the Knights finally kicked things into gear as their first drive resulted in a 52-yard pass from Helget to junior Alex Sellner, who ran in for a touchdown. After a failed two-point conversion, the momentum was still all on St. Mary’s side.
     
    MVL’s only successful play on its next drive was a 17 yard run, as the Knights defense stepped up big once again and the Chargers were forced to punt. The Knights quickly took advantage of the opportunity. This time it was Helget who made the big play, taking the ball himself and running for 57 yards down the field for a touchdown. Rothmeier’s extra point kick was good.
     
    After an interception by Wait on MVL’s third drive of the second quarter, St. Mary’s had another successful drive. It started with a 30-yard pass from Helget to junior Kodan Kosak, and two plays later the duo struck again for a 25-yard play. After a couple runs from Surprenant, Helget had a 2-yard touchdown run. The extra point attempt was blocked, and the score was brought to 19-0.
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    After a scoreless third, the Knights started the fourth with another touchdown after a short march down the field. Heiderscheidt ran nine yards and one more yard to get the touchdown which followed by a successful two-point conversion from Wait. On the next drive, the Chargers had a big 63 yard running play to be put on the board, and a two-point conversion brought the score to 27-8 which held for the rest of the game.
     
    St. Mary’s had a balanced offense, with 270 yards rushing and 227 yards passing. Helget led in passing after going 11-for-18 and 221 yards, and also led in rushing with 14 carries for 109 yards. Rothmeier led in receiving with four receptions for 77 yards.
     
    “It was decent,” said Knights Coach Brent Kucera on the season-opener. “We’ve got a lot of small things we’ve got to fix, but they’re all fixable things. Overall we’re happy with the first game.”

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