Beavers blanked in season opener

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The same issues that plagued the Minot State University football team in its inaugural NCAA Division II season cropped up again in the Beavers’ 2013 opener Saturday.

MSU failed to move the ball consistently and surrendered three big plays on defense in a 29-0 loss to Concordia University-St. Paul in front of 1,089 fans at Sea Foam Stadium.

“We just looked really out of whack on offense,” MSU coach Paul Rudolph said in a press release. “We weren’t very good on the offensive line and (sophomore quarterback) Zac (Cunha) wasn’t very good in the first half. We had too many three-and-outs.”

MSU (0-1) managed just 182 yards of total offense and C-SP outgained the Beavers 215-45 on the ground.

Golden Bears running back Tre Spears carried 22 times for 123 yards and junior quarterback Jared Russo completed 14 of 22 pass attempts for 223 yards and three touchdowns. Russo’s three scoring tosses went for 46, 66 and 26 yards.

CS-P led 15-0 at the half and added two passing TDs in the third quarter.

“Outside of four or five plays, the defense played well enough for us to be successful,” Rudolph said. “They didn’t play too bad, but we missed a tackle here and there and they made us pay for that.”

MSU sophomore cornerback Cooper Helm recorded the lone interception of the game late in the first half. Junior safety Levi Freidt led the Beavers with nine tackles, while junior linebacker Casey Weinmann, senior noseguard Luke Artz and senior cornerback Kewon Tapp added seven apiece.

Cunha, who was sacked four times, completed 16 of 32 throws for 137 yards. Senior wideout Wayne Peters was his most productive target, catching eight balls for 58 yards.

Redshirt freshman Jarvis Mustipher led the Beavers’ struggling ground attack with six carries for 33 yards. Sophomore Randel Barber gained 19 yards on seven attempts.

MSU plays Augustana in its home opener at 6 p.m. Saturday.

– Daily News Staff