MENOMONIE (athletics.uwstout.edu) - The UW-Stout football team was unable to come up with points when they needed them in losing, 37-10, to 13th-ranked North Central College Saturday at Don & Nona Williams Stadium.
Trailing only 21-10 in the third quarter, the Blue Devils came up with three turnovers, all on North Central's side of the 50-yard line. Lineman Travis Mueller (Sr, Greenleaf) recovered a pair of fumbles and defensive back Jeremy Troupe-Masi (Sr, Fremont, Cal.) had an interception that gave the Blue Devils a chance to take the lead.
The offense was unable to do anything with these opportunities though, with the drives ending in an interception, a missed field goal, and a fumble.
North Central (2-1) showed why they are ranked 13th by controlling both lines of scrimmage, limiting the Blue Devils offense to only nine yards on the ground while gaining 164 rushing yards on offense.
Trailing for most of the game, Stout was forced to go to the pass early. Quarterback Michael Blizel (Sr, Sturgeon Bay) threw the ball 42 times, completing 18 passes for 178 yards and a touchdown.
North Central got on the board quickly, taking their first drive right down the field and scoring on a 48 yard touchdown pass to Jeff Stolzenburg.
Trevor Morning (Jr, Bloomer) took the ensuing kick-off back 54 yards, setting the Blue Devils(1-1) up with good field position and a chance to even the score.
Stout's drive stalled at the nine yard line and Ricky Marteney (Jr, Greenfield) kicked a 26 yard field goal to put the Blue Devils on the board.
That would be as close as Stout would get, as North Central scored again quickly with another 48 yard touchdown pass to Stolzenburg.
The Blue Devils looked to gain some momentum back midway through the second quarter as Blizel led the team 54 yards for a touchdown, capping off the drive with a 16 yard touchdown pass over the middle to tight end Josh Peterson (Sr, Cedar Grove).
Peterson finished with 39 yards on four receptions, which was tied for the team lead with running back Eric Brown (Sr, St. Paul) who led the team with 43 yards through the air.
The Blue Devils couldn't come up with an answer for North Central's rushing attack, however, as the Cardinals were able to continually pound the ball into the defense and pick up yards.
After a sloppy third quarter that saw the teams turn the ball over a combined five times, North Central put the game away with field goals of 41, 53, and 55 yards off the leg of kicker Nick Dace as well as a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Running back Paul Bernier (Sr, Lakeville, Minn.) led the Blue Devils with 42 rushing yards on seven carries. Stout finished with nine total rushing yards, but a punt snapped over the head of the Stout punter for a 34 yard loss. Blizel was also sacked three times for a total loss of 16 yards.
Damian Guggenbuehl (Jr, La Crosse) led Stout with 11 tackles, seven solo. David Lindell (Jr, New Richland, Minn.) pitched in nine tackles, four solo and Tyler Naatz (So, Menomonie) had eight tackles, three solo for the Blue Devils.
Stout will be at UW-River Falls, Saturday, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. in a non-conference tilt with the Falcons. This will be the 98th meeting of the long time foes.