During homecoming, a career-high of five touchdown passes from junior quarterback Kyle Larson to four different receivers powered the Pointers football team to a 38-28 win over UW-Eau Claire.
The University of Wiscosnin-Stevens Point’s aerial attack struck early on the Blugolds, with three touchdown passes in the first half. The scoring opened with a leaping catch in the corner of the end zone by senior Matt Sosinsky, an eight-yard touchdown on an 80-yard opening drive for UWSP. The Blugolds had no answer to stop Sosinsky in the game as he made many leaping catches over UW-Eau Claire defenders. Sosinsky finished the game with eight catches for 150 yards, leading all wide receivers.
The Blugolds responded quickly as freshman quarterback JT Denhartog threw a 37-yard touchdown pass on third down to Tyler Korth, tying the game. Despite giving up the early score, UWSP would score the next 21 points of the game.
In the second quarter after a fumbled punt by UW-Eau Claire, Larson threw his first of two touchdown passes in the quarter to junior wide receiver Logan Taylor. In the game, Taylor caught five passes for 51 yards and two touchdowns, while Larson threw 19-27 for 265 yards and five touchdowns.
Starting the third quarter, UWSP stopped the Blugolds . This was followed with an 80-yard drive that ended in a 20-yard touchdown reception for junior wide receiver Jared Pankow, bringing UWSP to a 28-7 lead.
The Blugolds would make a small comeback attempt scoring 14 unanswered points. The first score came from an eight-yard pass on fourth down from Denhartog to wide receiver Matthew Knapp. After a three and out by UWSP, UW-Eau Claire drove down the field and had a a second chance on the drive as UWSP was off sides on fourth down. This mistake resulted in a touchdown run by running back Toure Wallace and UW-Eau Claire trimmed the lead to 28-21.
The Pointers refused to relinquish the lead, using a balanced offensive attack late in the game, scoring 10 unanswered points off a 27-yard field goal by senior kicker Jesse Vervelde and three-yard touchdown pass to senior tight end Reed Lehman.
The Pointers totaled 426 yards offensively and utilized running-back depth by spreading the ball between Britton Vernon, Christian Almonte and DeJuan Wright. The trio amassed 161 yards on the ground. Vernon led the game in rushing with 117 yards on 18 carries, including a 44-yard run. This was the sophomore’s first 100-yard game.
Defensively, UWSP had a relentless pass rush from seniors Aaron Karlen, Dan Brown and sophomore Tanner Beaman, who also recorded two sacks and a forced fumble. Karlen recorded seven tackles with one sack and two tackles for loss, while Brown had a sack as well. Sophomore linebacker Tyler Raschke led UWSP in tackles with a career-high of 10 tackles, while senior defensive backs Mike Longmeyer and Matt Gaffney each had eight.
The Pointers improved to 3-1 for the season and 1-0 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. UWSP travels to No. 14 UW-Platteville on Oct. 10 in another WIAC game.