Jamestown, N.D. – The Waldorf University football team finished an onside-kick-recovery short in its 26-19 Saturday afternoon loss to the University of Jamestown.
Waldorf (2-2) saw itself down by 14 points early on in the fourth quarter after Jamestown quarterback Dylan Klatt completed a fourth and goal conversion to Liam Huseby for a two-yard touchdown score. Klatt's two-yard passing TD made it 26-12, and Jamestown head coach Josh Kittell decided to go for two instead of kicking the point-after-touchdown (PAT).
Kittell's gutsy decision backfired, as Klatt's intended pass for Josh Verghis on the two-point conversion attempt was incomplete. In fact, Kittell decided to go for two the entire game instead of relying on his freshman placekicker, Chandler Johnson, for PAT attempts.
Instead of being down three possessions (27-12), the two-point conversion fail allowed the Warriors to be down by just two touchdowns and two PAT's. The Warriors would obtain the ball back with over 11 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, but the Jimmies defense shut down Waldorf's offense for a three-and-out possession.
The Jimmies would get the ball back on Adam Rademacher's ensuing punt, and although Jamestown didn't score on this possession, they did a great job of running the ball, getting first downs, and milking the clock.
Jamestown recorded five first downs and ate over eight minutes on the game clock before punting the ball back to Waldorf with 1:51 remaining in the fourth quarterback.
Knowing that time was of the essence, sophomore quarterback Hilton Joseph did a fantastic job of running the two-minute, no huddle offense. Pinned inside his own 26-yard line, Joseph maneuvered the ball down the field with precision and ease. Incredibly, the Warriors managed to go 74 yards in just 51 seconds, with Joseph finishing the drive on a 25-yard touchdown pass to Cameron Newsome.
Rademacher would kick home the PAT to set up one of the most exciting plays in football: the onside kick.
Rademacher actually almost recovered his own onside kick, but a slew of Jimmies special team specialists knocked the ball out of the plackicker's hands in the middle of the pile. Klatt would subsequently take a knee to run out the clock for Jamestown's (1-4) first win of the regular season.
Although Waldorf showed a lot of grit and determination in the final two minutes of play, the Warriors offense couldn't consistently put up points in the second half.
After leading 10-8 going into halftime, the Warriors would manage to score just seven total points of offense (Cameron Newsome recorded two points on an interception the other way during one of Jamestown's two-point conversion attempts).
Waldorf converted just one third down on five attempts in the second half. The Warriors tried to convert on just one fourth down during the game, and this fourth down play happened late in the third quarter. With Jamestown winning 20-12, Waldorf had 4th and 3 at Jamestown's 16-yard line. Instead of kicking the field goal, Waldorf head coach Josh Littrell decided to try and gain three yards to keep the drive going. Jamestown made a key fourth down stop on Cale Crowder's rushing attempt, and Crowder actually lost three yards on the play.
One of the reasons to why Littrell decided to not kick that field goal late in the third quarter was Waldorf's placekicker/punter struggled in the first half. Although Rademacher averaged slightly over 34 yards with his punts throughout the entire game, the freshman kicker from Ames, Iowa missed two field goals in the first half. Both of these attempts were from less than 35 yards away. However, he was perfect on his PAT attempts.
In addition, Waldorf's offense and defense were led primarily by Joseph and Newsome, with these players scoring most of Waldorf's points throughout the game.
Newsome was quite possibly Waldorf's MVP of the afternoon, as the sophomore from Century, Fla. led all wide receivers with seven catches for 121 yards and a touchdown reception. He also showed a lot of mental toughness on defense, as the Floridian recorded five tackles, one sack, a tackle for loss, and two interceptions in the seven-point defeat.
Meanwhile, Joseph found the end zone with both his arm and his legs. The Miami, Fla. native threw for 194 yards and a passing touchdown, and he also ran for 22 yards and a rushing touchdown. More importantly though, Joseph did not throw any interceptions or fumble the football.
Waldorf's pass rush kept its offense in the game by getting all kinds of penetration against Jamestown's offensive line. The Warriors would sack Klatt on four different occasions, with James Bell III receiving two of those sacks. Bell III finished the game with a very impressive stats line: two sacks for -18 yards and three tackles for loss for -20.
Moises Jauregui was the other Warriors player to have multiple tackles for loss in the game. The sophomore from Las Vegas, Nev. posted two tackles behind the line of scrimmage for a grand total of -8 yards.
The only negative aspect of Waldorf's defense was its inconsistency at stopping the run.
Waldorf gave up 196 rushing yards in its first conference loss of the season, as two Jamestown tailbacks each recorded over 100 yards on the ground. Allen Jevning gained 130 yards on 22 rushes, while Jimmy Hatch accumulated 114 yards on 23 rushing attempts. Each of these players scored on rushing touchdowns.
Waldorf has now given up over 190 rushing yards in two of its last three games. The Warriors will look to shore up its run defense when they go up against Valley City State University on Sept. 30 in Forest City.