Montevideo’s second football win this season was also the Thunder Hawks’ second victory in a rivalry game as the T-Hawks defeated Yellow Medicine East 33-20 here Friday in the “Battle for the Paddle.”
Piling up 25 first downs and 409 yards of total offense, Montevideo’s attack produced five long touchdown drives of 66, 88, 72, 77 and 70 yards.
The ground game, with Marcus Kranz gaining 97 of the team’s 202 rushing yards, and the passing attack, with Troy Diggins throwing for 207 yards and three TDs, were equally effective.
Montevideo opened the scoring on Wyatt Enger’s 27-yard run. The score was set up by a 27-yard pass from Diggins to Austin Hansen.
The Sting, trying to snap a losing streak that dates back to the 2010 season, came back to take the lead on a blown coverage by the Montevideo defense. Sting quarterback Blake Lindstrom found Tyson Velde wide open for a 22-yard scoring play.
Montevideo scored on its next two possessions for a 21-7 halftime lead.
Diggins hit Bryce Maurice for an 11-yard gain on a fourth-and-3 play. Facing another fourth-and-3 situation, on the 7-yard line, Diggns connected with Logan Knoshal for five yards. Kranz barreled into the endzone standing up on the next play.
The T-Hawks got the ball back when John Herfurth recovered a Sting fumble on the Montevideo 28-yard line. Diggins completed passes of 19 yards to Enger and 12 to Dazhown Coleman. Diggins hit Austin Hiepler on a slant pattern, and Hiepler eluded two Sting tacklers for a 25-yard scoring play.
Montevideo took the second half kickoff and drove 77 yards in 10 plays, eating up nearly half of the third quarter. Diggins gained 12 yards on a keeper, and Coleman ran for 13. Hiepler caught a 23-yard pass from Diggins, setting up a 13-yard TD pass to Knoshal, who caught the ball on the 6 and dove into the endzone.
The Sting still had hope when they scored less than a minute later on a 46-yard pass from Lindstrom to Chase Richter to pull YME within 27-14.
YME threatened to get even closer early in the fourth quarter when a tipped pass was intercepted by Lindstrom on YME’s 27-yard line Vikander ran for 28 yards, but Preston Herfurth stepped in front of a Sting receiver to make a key interception.
The T-Hawks sealed the win when Diggins hit Knoshal in stride down the right sideline for a 38-yard scoring play and a 33-14 ;ead with 9:34 to play.
Montevideo (2-2) will host Minnewaska Area Friday at 7 p.m.
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