The Huskies claimed the victory in the GLIAC matchup against Davenport Saturday.
“It was a hard fought and very tough game for us today,” said head coach Steve Olson. “I’m proud of our kids for coming out and finishing the way that they did. We had a lot of what we call desire plays today and from a lot of different players.”
Michigan Tech grabbed the first possession putting together a 16 play drive and shaving 9:32 off the clock. In his first collegiate start Saturday, freshman quarterback Garrett Young found sophomore wide receiver Jacob Wenzlick, bringing the Huskies to the Davenport two yard line. However, the game would remain scoreless due to a tough Davenport defense and a missed field goal attempt.
The Huskies brick wall defense stepped up against the Panthers, forcing a punt. The Panthers drive ended on a sack by junior defensive lineman Cody Goldsworthy at the Tech 35 yard line.
Goldsworthy would go on to recover a fumble at the Panthers 26 yard line to start the first scoring drive of the game. Senior running back James Henderson brought the ball to the Davenport 18 yard line, setting up a fourth and two. Young fired a pass down the right sideline to junior wide receiver Kevin Kirkland for an 18 yard touchdown with just over ten minutes to go in the half.
Davenport claimed a 30 yard field goal on the last play of the half to bring the score 7-3 as both teams left for the locker room.
The third quarter would see no scoring but would boast big plays by the defense and special teams. Freshman defensive back Brandon Oja blocked a punt, the fifth blocked kick of the year for the Huskies as a team.
Davenport briefly claimed the lead with a 47 yard touchdown pass with 7:50 left on the clock.
Junior Eric Kostreva, however, would return the kickoff for the Huskies, finding a gap in the middle of the field and claim a 93 yard touchdown. This is the second week in a row that the Huskies have been able to return a kickoff for a touchdown, last week’s touchdown return being the first since the 2012 season.
Senior safety Derek Cingel intercepted a pass giving possession back to the Huskies offense. Sophomore kicker Evan Evan Gornick successfully kicked for a 34 yard field goal bringing Michigan Tech to a 17-10 lead with just under two minutes left in game play.
Sophomore linebacker Marvin Wright claimed a second interception for the season and sealed the win for the Huskies.
“When we talk during the week about the difference between competing and winning, you have to have the want and desire to win football games,” said Olson. “It’s one thing to be able to stay close and compete, but the next step is how do you win. You do that by making big plays at big times and we were able to come through in those situations today.”
11 passes for 92 yards went to Young in his first collegiate start. Henderson carried for 58 yards while senior fullback Alex Sherbinow claimed four carries and 11 yards. Wenzlick led in receiving yards with four catches for 34 yards. Sophomore linebacker Tyler Jacqmain led the team in tackles with nine, followed by Goldsworthy with eight tackles, two of those being sacks. Cingel and Wright came away with an interception each. In total, the defense forced three turnovers and boasted five sacks.
Michigan Tech heads to Tiffin University for another GLIAC game at 1 p.m. next Saturday.
“Tiffin is a very athletic football team,” said Olson. “They are playing very well on the defensive side of the ball and on both sides of the ball they are very athletic. They have a lot of team speed so that will be one of the big challenges for us next week.”