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Scooper quarterback Tanner Ortlieb drops back to pass.
Photo by Tim Potts
Scooper quarterback Tanner Ortlieb drops back to pass.

St. Thomas More Scores Late, Beat Scoopers At Home

Terry Anderson, KBHB Radio Sports - September 5, 2020

STURGIS, S.D --  The St. Thomas More Cavaliers used a balanced offense and two Scooper turnovers to etch out a 16-0 win over Sturgis on Friday night.

The Cavs, coming off a successful 8-2 season in 2019 that saw them make it to the playoff quarterfinals, came to Woodle field with a roster of 30 players, 20 of whom are returning letter winners.  One third of the St. Thomas More roster is made up of eighth graders or freshman.

Both teams battled hard through the first two quarters but couldn’t get the ball across the goal line.  The Cavs had their opportunities, with Cavalier kicker Jack Green attempting three field goals from 38, 52 and 34 yards but he couldn’t get one through the uprights.  The half ended with both teams scoreless.

Green finally converted a field goal from 23-yards with 1:15 left in the third quarter, giving St. Thomas More a 3-0 lead.  Sturgis moved the ball well offensively with a mix of passing by quarterback Tanner Ortlieb and short runs by fullback Wren Jacobs but couldn’t get into the red zone and the Cavs took their 3-0 lead into the fourth quarter.

Head coach Wayne Sullivan was content to run time off the clock as the Cavaliers took possession at their own 15-yard line early in the fourth quarter, following a stalled Scooper drive.  Sullivan changed tactics in the second half, going to a Wildcat-style offense with direct snaps to running backs Ryan Wojcik, Charlie Larson and his brother, Matthew.  That change in strategy kept the Scooper defense off-balance and allowed junior quarterback Jed Sullivan to find wide receiver Trey Herrboldt on passes of 36 and 14 yards, moving the ball to the Scooper 18-yard line.  The Cavs put together a 13 play, 85-yard drive late in the fourth quarter, culminating in a 3-yard touchdown run by Wojcik to give St. Thomas More a 9-0 lead with 4:22 left in the game.

The Scoopers took the ensuing kickoff back to their own 32-yard line but fumbled the ball two plays later.  Green scooped up the pigskin and ran it 38 yards down the field to paydirt, extending the St. Thomas More lead to 16-0 with just 3:40 left in the fourth quarter.  Sturgis went four and out on their next series and the Cavs ran out the clock to secure the win.

St. Thomas More finished the game with 300 yards of total offense.  Sullivan had 15 completions on 19 attempts and 183 yards passing.  Herrboldt had four catches for 66 yards.  Wojick carried the ball 14 times for 44 yards and had one touchdown.  The Cavs had four penalties for 35 yards and no turnovers.

The Sturgis offense was much improved from week one, finishing with 143 total yards.  Jacobs had 11 rushes for 30 yards.  Ortleib finished the night with nine completions on 18 attempts and 113 yards passing.  Sanden Graham had six receptions for 95 yards.  The Scoopers had two penalties for 20 yards and two turnovers, one interception and one fumble.

The Scoopers, 0-2 on the season, travel to Brookings on Sept. 11 to take on the Bobcats at Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium.

Phone number: 605-347-4455
E-mail: [email protected]
Address: 1612 Junction Avenue, Suite #1
Sturgis, SD 57785