Crusaders cruise to victory

Crusaders run over Crown defense
WATERTOWN, Wis. – The past is history and the Crusaders couldn’t be more thankful after defeating Crown College 33-19 on Saturday advancing them to 2-0. The football team has not started 2-0 since the 2006 season and is excited about the newfound direction.

Coach Peterson stated, “We’re proud of the guys and feel like we have a lot of leadership and young talent. Even when Crown had big plays we were able to move on and keep playing. It was nice to see the great turnout by the crowd to support the team as well.”

The Crusaders marched down the field on the opening drive as senior quarterback Phil Littrell (Valrico, Fla.) connected with sophomore wide receiver Josiah Brendemuehl (Mishicot, Wis.) for a five-yard touchdown at the 12:33 mark.

Crown answered five minutes later to even the score 7-7. In the second quarter with the score 14-7 Maranatha, sophomore running back Micah Burt (Cheney, Kans.) dashed up the sidelines for 59 yards to boost Maranatha’s score 20-7. Crown would come as close as 20-13 in the second quarter but could never catch up.

Maranatha’s offense outgained Crown by 41 yards with 323 total yards. The running game was particularly effective with 173 total yards for a 4.9 average per rush as Burt finished with 78 yards rushing with an 11.1 average. Freshman running back Jordan Dersch (Prattville, Ala.) finished with 78 yards and two touchdowns to wear down the Crown defense.

Littrell had success throwing the ball with 147 yards and two touchdowns and sophomore receiver Logan Beer (Atlanta, Ga.) finished the day with 84 yards and a touchdown.

Senior defensive end Ethan Rosen (New Munich, Minn.) led the defense with three out of the six total team sacks, while junior Ethan Lane (Atlanta, Ga.) finished with 16 total tackles and a key interception to halt a Crown drive.

Maranatha came into the game with several players in the top 5 statistical rankings for the NAC. Littrell was second in the NAC in both passing yards (168) and touchdowns (3). Brendemuehl entered the game as the conference leader in tackles with 16 and tallying another 11 tackles against Crown.

The Crusaders host Macalester College next Saturday September 17 at 2:00 p.m.