Last Thursday Morningside College played the most dominate DIII team in the country. Two time defending national champions University of Wisconsin Whitewater visited Morningside at Olson Stadium to compete against the top NAIA team in the country. The Mustangs knew they would have their hands full against a team that has won six of the last eight NCAA Division III titles and they proved to be too much for the Mustangs
UWW took an early lead scoring a touchdown in the first quarter followed by a field goal early in the second quarter for a 10-0 lead. Morningside, however, responded with a touchdown and the game was back and forth from there with both teams exchanging scores heading into the 4th quarter. With a very wet evening for football and the Sioux City locals out cheering on the Mustangs the 4th quarter proved to be one of the most exhilarating quarters of football to watch this year.
Morningside was down 26-21 to Wisconsin Whitewater, who came into the match with a 34 game win streak, but there was plenty of football left in the game. After a few possession exchanges the Mustangs Tyler Kavan scored on a 17 yard run to put Morningside up 27-26 with just under 7 minutes left in the game. They decided to go for a two point conversion to make it a 3 point game but failed on it with an incomplete pass.
Morningside would quickly get the ball back with a fumble but were only able to come away converting on a 36 yard field goal by Jared Amundson to put the Mustangs up 30-26 with 4 minutes left in the game. UWW, however, responded marching 75 yards in 8 plays and eating up most of the clock for the go ahead touchdown to win the game 33-30.
It was an incredible game to watch between two of the top teams in their divisions battling it out on every play. Morningside may have let this game slip away with 10 penalties for 75 yards and fumbling 6 times losing one of them. These hiccups definitely hurt the Mustangs offense, which leads the nation in total offense with 662 yards per game, but kept them to only 402 yards this game.
Connor Niles had a career high of 137 yards receiving on nine receptions and Tyler Kavan had a career high in yards rushing with 123 yards. Zac Schleuger collected a game high 13 tackles two for a loss and a sack.
Head out to Orange City this Saturday for a 1:30 kickoff between Morningside and the 10th ranked Northwestern Red Raiders.