The Oredigger football team traveled to Pueblo Saturday night to take on the undefeated and third-ranked CSU-Pueblo and were handed a 48-28 defeat by the Thunderwolves.
Mines got off to a shaky start, fumbling the ball on their opening possession which set up a CSU field goal. The following offensive drive went much more smoothly, as the Orediggers drove down the field and found the endzone on a 21-yard pass from Joe Schneider to Matt Brown. The Thunderwolves would answer right back in under three minutes though, stringing together their own scoring drive to take the 10-7 lead. Mines seemed poised to score again on their ensuing possession, putting together a 14 play drive to set up a 41-yard Avery Llewellyn field goal that would have tied the game at ten. However, the kick missed wide right, and after the first quarter Mines found themselves down 10-7.
Momentum began to shift drastically to the Thunderwolves in the second quarter, as the CSUP offense would convert three of their four possessions into touchdowns while Mines’ offense was held in check by the Thunderwolves defense. CSM was forced to punt three times in the second quarter alone, and the one drive that went deep into Thunderwolves’ territory abruptly ended on an intercepted pass from Schneider. The Orediggers found themselves down 31-7 going into the locker rooms at halftime, which would prove to be too deep of a hole to dig themselves out of.
The Thunderwolves picked up in the third quarter right where they left off taking their third drive into the endzone to increase the lead to 38-7. However, the Mines offense began to show some life late in the third, as their last possession of the quarter ended with a 29-yard scoring strike from Schneider to Cole Spurgeon. This cut the CSUP lead to 38-14 heading into the final quarter of play.
CSUP would start off the fourth quarter by putting up three more points on a short field goal, but CSM would answer right back after forcing a Thunderwolves fumble deep in their own territory. The Orediggers capitalized on the short field position and scored on a three-yard Schneider quarterback keeper, cutting the CSUP lead to 41-21. After stopping Mines’ next possession on a failed fourth down conversion, the Thunderwolves took advantage of their own short field opportunity to score and bump their lead up to 48-21. With little more than a minute left in the game, Mines would manage to put up seven more points on a 58-yard strike from Justin Dvorak to Ty Young, but it was too little too late as CSU-Pueblo still won 48-28 to remain undefeated.
CSM will have a week to regroup after the loss before they hit the road again to take on Colorado Mesa in Grand Junction. Though not undefeated and seeking a national title like CSU-Pueblo, the Colorado Mesa Mavericks are currently 5-2 (4-1 RMAC) and will be another tough test for the Orediggers. That game kicks off at 1pm on Saturday, October 26th.