The Warriors dominate the field at Upper Iowa University

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Carolyn Hauschild

“The biggest thing for me when performing under pressure is to have a clear mind,” Jacob Scott said, “I just take a deep breathe while I’m lining up and trust my holder and snapper.”

Kailey Doeseckle, Sports Reporter

After their back-to-back wins over nationally ranked opponents in the previous two weeks, the Winona State University football team set out to Upper Iowa University on Saturday with quite the advantage.  

The Peacocks stood at just 1-8, with only one win so far against Minot State at 33-22, which was also their first time scoring above 30 points this year.  

Sam Santiago-Lloyd assured the Warrior offense owned the end zone against the Peacocks, scoring on runs from nine, three, two and one yard out, all of which occurred in just the first half of the game.  

While Santiago-Lloyd often laid the final blow on most scoring drives, Warrior teammate Dominik London was also a key part of success, leading the team with 87 total rushing yards on 19 carries, both of which are season-high marks.  

To supplement Santiago-Lloyd and London’s efforts was a scoring play thrown by quarterback Kyle Haas to Joe Sikma that capped a quick-strike 57-yard drive for Winona State. Haas and fellow quarterback Trevor Paulsen have split quarterback duties in games so far this year, this one included. 

“I would say most of my goals are team driven,” Paulsen said. “My main goal is to do everything I can to help our team take the next step.” 

Paulsen has the third fewest interceptions of any NSIC quarterback with at least 125 passing attempts. This game he racked up 78 yards and three completions. 

Sikma’s touchdown and Jacob Scott’s successive point were one of three second half scores that allowed the Warriors to keep their foot on the gas and leave Upper Iowa far behind.  

“The biggest thing for me when performing under pressure is to have a clear mind,” Scott said, “I just take a deep breathe while I’m lining up and trust my holder and snapper.”  

The pressure certainly was on with the wet and slippery conditions of the field. Nonetheless, Scott embraced that poised mindset and hit his only field goal attempt of the day at 27-yards in the third quarter. The PAT unit was six-for-six on points-after kicks.  

Winona State finished off the game when running back Nick McCabe scored on a two-yard dive in the fourth quarter, leaving the score at a staggering 45-7.  

In a tremendous season so far, Winona State’s defense has often been the one to shine, but heading into the UIU matchup, it was all the offensive line and running back regiment that rolled to 267 rushing yards, five touchdowns and an average carry of 4.7 yards per touch.  

Offensively, the Warriors also kept Iowa State at bay, holding them to just 57 rushing yards and 150 yards though the air, half of which came from their only touchdowns toss. 

Defensively, Winona State’s Vernon Porte snagged the only interception for either team throughout the entire game, while Darius Manuel obtained two sacks among his team-leading seven tackles. Kyjuan Vengrowsky added a sack as well. 

Nathan Wilcher was also quite the force on the Warriors defensive line with four solo stops among his five tackles.  

This dominating win by Winona State sets up quite the showdown in week 11 at Minnesota State University. The Warrior-Maverick matchup, which was already a rivalry game in preseason, will now have conference, regional and national, implications as both teams sit at 8-2 in the NSIC and feature currently in both national DII football polls. 

Winona State will travel to Minnesota State, Mankato for one of the biggest games in recent memory on Saturday, Nov. 12.