Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

December 9, 2023

Vikings win first CCIW game

With a big home crowd of Augustana students and parents, the Vikings won their first CCIW conference game of the year, defeating the Carroll University Pioneers 41-14 on Saturday evening.
The game got off to a solid start for the Vikings as junior Jacob Stytz scored the first points for the Vikings, kicking a three-point field goal to put the Vikings up 3-0 off their first possession.
Stytz said it was a good feeling to get the first points of the game.
“It’s nice to get points on the board, especially the first ones, because it gets everyone fired up,” Stytz said.
The Vikings defense held the Pioneers in check the first period, forcing them to punt on their first three possessions.
The Vikings scored its first touchdown about 12 minutes into the game as sophomore Ryan Pitra ran the ball into the endzone. Stytz scored the field-goal after the touchdown, putting the Vikings up 10-0, which was the end score for the first period.
The second period was a back- and-forth battle between the defenses. The Pioneers were able to push through and found their way onto the scoreboard with a touchdown in the last seven minutes of the first half.
Only a few minutes passed before the Pioneers were able to find their way back to another quick touchdown after securing a fumble by the Vikings. The Pioneers led the Vikings for another few minutes before the Vikings scored another touchdown by Pitra in the last 40 seconds of the half.
After a scoreless and mainly defensive third period, the Vikings scored three touchdowns while preventing the Pioneers from scoring in the fourth.
Much of the scoring in this game came from the underclassmen as Pitra scored two touchdowns and freshman Bobby Jarosz scored the last two in the fourth.
Pitra said the focus for this week was on leadership and geared towards encouraging the younger players.
“I think the older guys and some of the younger guys, myself included and a couple of sophomores, were trying to bring that standard up for them and giving them the expectation to make plays,” Pitra said.
Head coach Stephen Bell was happy with how the term performed, especially the younger athletes.
“I thought we made some plays that we didn’t make last week,” Bell said. “Our kids handled the second half really well and executed the way we wanted to, though there were a few hiccups.”
Bell also attributed a lot of the game to the sideline remaining positive.
“You could tell on the sideline it was different,” Bell said.
Looking forward to next Saturday’s game, Bell said it’s all in the team’s development.
“It’s another step in the progression of what we’re trying to do,” Bell said. “We gotta be able to handle road trips because they’re different. It’s an overnight for us. Luckily, we had an overnight so they’ve done it before and know the sequence of events.”
Bell also said they’ll have to plan a bit differently when they play against the Carthage College Reds at 1 p.m. on Saturday at Kenosha, Wisconsin.
“Carthage is a different animal so we’ll have to game-plan a little bit different than we did today,” Bell said.

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Vikings win first CCIW game