Baugh, Mogged Lift Red Devils to win
Eureka College freshman Dorell Baugh (Nashville, Tenn./Hillsboro H.S.) became the fourth player in program history to rush for four touchdowns in a game and sophomore receiver Matt Mogged (Piper City/Tri-Point H.S.) put up a career-high 154 receiving yards and two scores, sparking the Red Devils in a 42-28 Upper Midwest Athletic Conference victory over Westminster on Homecoming, Saturday afternoon at McKinzie Field.
The Red Devils got on the board on their second series of the afternoon, covering 64 yards on eight plays for a 7-0 lead. Baugh scored his first career rushing touchdown on a 1-yard dive over the top of the pile at the goal line with 8:21 left in the quarter.
Eureka junior quarterback Blake Robles (East Lake, Fla./East Lake H.S./Ottawa) completed four passes on the drive, including a 9-yard pickup to senior Dustin Fritsch (Sterling/Sterling H.S.) that set the stage for Baugh’s score.
Westminster quickly answered to knot the score at 7-7.
An 11-yard strike from quarterback Joe Plassmeyer to Sam Lantz, Jr. with 5:51 to play in the first quarter capped the visitors’ drive of 61 yards.
The score remained tied 7-7 until Eureka regained the lead on the second play of the second quarter.
Two plays after the Red Devils converted on 4th-and-3 on the first career reception by senior linebacker Jacob Carls (El Paso/El Paso-Gridley H.S.), Baugh hit paydirt again, this time from two yards out, giving Eureka a 14-7 cushion with 14:18 left before halftime.
The Blue Jays got excellent field position on the ensuing kickoff when Kyree Hart picked up 43 yards to the Eureka 45.
WC needed only four plays to tie the score again, getting the 14-14 deadlock when Plassmeyer found Mac Findeiss with a 34-yard touchdown pass with 12:25 remaining in the second quarter.
Plenty of offense ensued before intermission. Baugh’s third rushing touchdown of the half, another 1-yard plunge, put the exclamation point on Eureka’s 10-play, 65-yard series.
The Red Devils initially received a 25-yard field goal from freshman Tyler Winders (Pekin/Pekin H.S.), but an offsides penalty against Westminster negated the kick created a 4th-and-1 chance for the Red Devils, allowing Baugh to extend the drive with a 3-yard rush.
Eureka pushed its lead to two scores late in the half when Robles found Mogged open up the sideline for a 58-yard catch-and-run for the score and a 28-14 lead with just 2:45 left before intermission.
The Blue Jays answered by covering 67 yards in 120 seconds to trail just 28-21 at halftime.
A 38-yard completion from Plassmeyer to Lantz pushed the Blue Jays deep into Eureka territory before Plassmeyer hit Mike Washington with an 8-yard touchdown throw with 44 seconds left.
Trailing by one possession, the Blue Jays received the opening kickoff of the second half, but it was the Eureka defense that made the first big play of the third quarter.
Junior cornerback Christian Watson (Eureka/Eureka H.S.) picked off an underthrown pass from Plassmeyer at the Westminster 40 for his second career interception, setting the stage for the EC offense to stretch the lead back to two possessions.
A 37-yard completion from Robles to Fritsch moved the ball to the Westminster 3, allowing Baugh to rush around the end for a 3-yard touchdown run just one play later for a 35-21 advantage with 13:07 remaining in the third quarter.
On the ensuing series, Westminster appeared to score on a 3-yard touchdown throw from Plassmeyer to Washington, but an illegal man downfield penalty erased the score.
The Eureka defense ultimately forced a turnover on downs at the Eureka 8.
Just two plays later, Mogged got free along the sideline yet again, running under Robles’ throw for an 87-yard touchdown pass and a 42-21 lead with 9:47 left in the third.
The score marked Eureka’s longest play from scrimmage since Nick Lindsey connected with Cody Troutman for a 98-yard touchdown at Principia on Oct. 18, 2008.
The Eureka defense protected the lead over the remainder of the contest, producing three turnovers on downs, two punts and a fumble recovery over the Blue Jays’ next six possessions before WC running back Ronnie Seals, Jr. scored on a 2-yard rush with just 36 seconds left in the game to set the final margin.
Baugh was a threat all day long for Eureka, rushing nine times for 17 yards and four scores and hauling in two catches for 22 yards.
He also completed his first career pass, a 30-yard completion to senior Jake Bane (Dana/Fieldcrest H.S./Monmouth) in the fourth quarter. Baugh joined Eric Leiser, Ralph McKinzie and Nick Lindsey as Red Devils to rush for four touchdowns in a single contest.
Leiser’s six scores on the ground versus Concordia (Wis.) on Nov. 2, 1991 remains the single-game Eureka record.
Robles finished his fifth start in a Eureka uniform 16-for-27 for 322 yards and a pair of scores.
Mogged hauled in three receptions for 154 yards, while Fritsch led the Red Devils four catches.
Seven different Red Devils had a reception. Senior running back Corey Dawson (Farmington/Farmington H.S.) carried 21 times for 71 yards to drive the Red Devils’ 99-yard rushing attack.
Carls led the defense with a game-high 15 tackles.
Senior linebacker Drew Duffy (Flanagan/Flanagan H.S.) was next with 10 stops. Duffy also had a sack for a loss of six yards.
Plassmeyer went 17-for-32 for 256 yards and three touchdowns. Seals, who entered the game ranked 20th in NCAA Division III with 135.5 rushing yards per game, was limited to 100 yards on 26 carries.
Lantz led all receivers with six receptions and finished the day with 109 yards.
Eureka will shoot for its first 5-1 start since 1995 when the Red Devils travel to Martin Luther next Saturday for a 1 p.m. UMAC kickoff in New Ulm, Minn. The game marks Eureka’s third and final trip to Minnesota this season.
NOTES: Eureka is off to a 4-1 start for the second time in the last three seasons and the third time since 1995 ... Saturday’s win gave the Red Devils three consecutive Homecoming wins for the first time since winning five in a row from 1991 through 1995 ... The Red Devils’ 42 points scored and 14-point margin of victory were their best marks in a Homecoming game since beating Blackburn 42-16 on Sept. 20, 1997 ... Eureka has now won three in a row over Westminster to even the all-time series, 3-3 ... The Red Devils’ 352 passing yards were a season-high ... The 42 points scored marked Eureka’s best offensive output since a 62-55 win at Knox on Sept. 1, 2012 ... Eureka is now 7-1 since 2009 under head coach Kurt Barth when scoring 40 points or more ... Carls’ 15 stops were the most by a Red Devil this season ... Eureka’s 40 rushing attempts and average of 6.6 yards per play were season-highs ... Winders was a perfect 6-for-6 on extra point attempts.