Knights top Jaguars in Homecoming

CJ Surprenant
Special to the Herald-Dispatch

The St. Mary’s Knights rolled past the Grenada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman Jaguars on Friday, Oct. 1 — Homecoming football night in Sleepy Eye. 

The Knights’ offense showed an out-muscling attitude at every level, led by senior running back Trent Steffensmeier. Steffensmeier rushed for 190 yards and 2 touchdowns on his 36 carries. Senior quarterback Carson Domeier rushed 12 times totaling 34 yards. Junior fullback Brandon Tauer rushed for 15 yards on his 4 attempts. Sophomore running back Jon Petermann had one rush for 8 yards. 

Senior running back Trent Steffensmeier rushed for 190 yards and 2 touchdowns on his 36 carries in the Homecoming game.

Heavy rain earlier in the evening caused wet conditions which led to some below-average passing on the night. Carson Domeier completed 11 of 20 with 115 yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception. Catching those passes were junior wideout Kaleb Wait, junior tight end Owen Weiss, and senior running back Trent Steffensmeier. Wait caught 7 passes for a nice 69 yards and one touchdown. Weiss had 3 catches for 40 yards. Steffensmeier caught 1 pass for 6 yards. 

The defense made the Jaguars into a one-dimensional team. St. Mary’s choked their running game, allowing only 25 yards of rushing from the Jags. GHEC/T quickly turned into a pass-happy force, being so bold as to throw the ball on first down. The Jaguars picked up 143 yards passing, but were held to a 31% conversion rate on third down. The defensive stats may seem unimpressive, but remember that a good chunk of plays ended in incompletions for the Jags.

Steffensmeier led with 4 tackles and one assist. Junior linebacker Colton Roiger and senior defensive end Carson Domeier each had one tackle. Junior linebacker Brandon Tauer and senior nose tackle Jacob Stevens each had one tackle and one assist. Junior free safety Kaleb Wait snagged 2 interceptions while recording one tackle and one assist. 

Special teams really showed out big time for the Knights. Just before the end of the half, on 4th-and-goal from the 25-yard line, Domeier drilled a 43 yard field goal with plenty of leg to spare. This put the Knights up 16-0 going into halftime. Junior running back Jon Petermann had one kick return for 12 yards. Petermann averaged 18 yards per return on punts. 

The Player of the Game was junior wideout and free safety Kaleb Wait for his offensive production and his defensive playmaking. “Something that went well is our defense. There were some big plays that we gave up, but that’s football. We need to work on our one-on-one defense and our blocking needs to be more consistent. Something that made a difference was the relentless running by Trent. He won’t go down, and makes it very hard for defenses to defend our pass and our run game," said Wait. "Something memorable about the night would be the Homecoming Dance—it’s always fun after a win.” 

The Knights have risen to 5-0 and are ranked #2 in the state in class 9-man football. They’ll travel to Hector to play the 1-4 BLHS Mustangs on Friday, Oct. 8.