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ISSUE 116 VOL 4 PUBLISHED 10/4/2002

Seeing red in Collegeville

By Mike Cassano
Staff Writer

Friday, October 4, 2002

There will be no perfect season this year. Mighty Meidt will not lead his team to a 10-0 record. And there was no joy in Collegeville. The Ole's battled through rain, wind, and an unstoppable St. John's team that numbered well over 150 dressed players. When the final buzzer sounded, the disheartened Oles marched off the field at the hands of a 59-20 beating. There was no joy in Collegeville. The first quarter was the shining star for the Oles as they took a short-lived 13-0 lead. It was the defense that got things started as Senior Chad Thomas intercepted Ross Denne's pass and returned it 32 yards to the Johnnies’ four-yard line. First Year Jason Moore drove the ball into the end zone to give the Oles the lead. The two point conversion failed as First Year Jason Wilsey tried to complete a short pass. Just moments later, Senior Kip Pennau intercepted Denne's pass and ran it back 82 yards for the touchdown, the first of his career. The Oles lead 13-0 after eight minutes of play. Several hundred Ole fans made the two-hour drive to Collegeville and were in full force as the team took the early lead. "I thought we had them when we were up early in the first," said First Year Nathan Espirtu. He was wrong. Looking across the field all you could see was a red wall. Players stretched from end zone to end zone, two deep in some areas. It was inevitable that out of all those players they could find 11 that were great. The rain slowly dissipated and so did the Oles’ lead. St. John's quickly got down to business and started completing pass after pass. Johnnies' quarterback, Ross Denne threw for 388 yards and four touchdowns. "They are a great football team," said Meidt. "They have so much speed and talent it's very hard to beat them.” "I don't think we played that well, we haven't played well all season," continued Meidt. It's easier to make mistakes against Carleton and not pay for them. But in order to beat St. Johns you have to play a perfect football game." The Oles were less than perfect on this day. Senior quarterback Brian Senske was 13-28 for 122 yards with one interception. A day that pales into comparison to his 271 yard day against Augsburg the week before. Moore coughed the ball up twice, the Johnnies pouncing on one of them. "The bottom line is we need to execute better," said Meidt. "It's not an issue of heart or determination. Our guys never gave up out there, which would have been easy to do. They kept at it." One stand out was First Year linebacker John Davis. Davis picked off two St. John’s passes, filling in for injured Senior Owen Buckmaster. Davis made a great over the shoulder grab on his first pick taking away what would have been a huge gain for the Johnnies. "John played great for us," said Senior Chad Thomas. "It's great when young guys can get in there and make things happen." On the horizon the Oles have their homecoming game at 1:00 p.m. The game will be of key importance in determining the outcome of the MIAC standings later in the season. St. Thomas is coming off a defeat at the hands of U.W. Stout 27-7. "They are a good team this year," said Meidt. "I think we match up very well against them. The fact that it is our homecoming game should be to our benefit. The rowdy crowd should help our younger players to get excited and get ready to play." Perhaps there will be joy in Northfield this weekend.

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