Saturday’s game pitted the Orediggers against South Dakota School of Mines & Technology’s Hardrockers. After 474 yards of offensive play, Mines reversed their loss a week before with a 52-24 victory. Junior Clay Garcia led the CSM offense, gaining 415 yards and completing 24 out of 42 attempted passes.
CSM fell behind early in the game due to first quarter due to two touchdowns made by SDSMT, however a strong offense by CSM ended the first half with a 21-3 run, for a 28-17 lead over the Hardrockers. The Hardrockers kept the score close throughout the second quarter, but two key red zone stops by the CSM defense, including a blocked field goal, kept SDSMT out of the endzone and allowed the Orediggers to take the offensive regain control by halftime.
Any hopes the Hardrockers had of getting back in the game were erased when senior Defensive Back Kyle Goracke intercepted Nick Russell on the opening drive of the second half. Six plays and 21 yards later, Garcia connected with Tom Kastens on the way to a 21-0 run to start the third quarter.
Wide out Cody Renken led the Orediggers in receptions with 9 catches for 178 yards as the Orediggers improved to 1-1 on the season. Saturday’s game marks the tenth consecutive win for Mines over SDSMT for a series lead of 10-0.
Mines looks to build off of a strong season last year, which witnessed an 8-3 record overall. The Orediggers finished second in the RMAC in the preseason coaches’ poll, and the team boasts an RMAC-high seven players who were named All-RMAC.
The win over the Hardrockers was an important rebound for Colorado School of Mines, who suffered a tough loss to Washburn the weekend before at Campbell Field (formerly Brooks Field) for the second straight year. Mines has a bye week next Saturday and picks up play September 18 against New Mexico Highlands, a team that CSM lit up for 69 points a year ago.