ST. PAUL, Minn. (10/14/17)---Chad Johnson broke the school record for touchdowns in a career and the Cobber Black Shirt defense posted its first shutout since the 2010 season as No.21-ranked Concordia rebounded to blank Hamline 45-0.
Johnson scored three times to up his career TD total to 37 in the Cobbers' fifth win of the season. He also rushed for 154 yards in the victory. Concordia's defense held Hamline to minus-41 yards rushing and 124 total offensive yards in collecting its first shutout since the second game of the 2010 season when they beat Valley City State 42-0.
Concordia is now 5-1 overall and 3-1 in MIAC games while Hamline falls to 2-4 in all games and 1-3 in league play.
The Cobbers wasted little time in setting the tone for the game. They took the opening kickoff and drove 61 yards in five plays to open the scoring and take a 7-0 lead. Sophomore quarterback Blake Kragnes' 41-yard scamper up the middle proved to be the game-winning TD and was Kragnes' first collegiate touchdown.
Concordia scored on their first three possessions of the game and built the lead to 17-0 with 7:58 left in the second quarter.
Johnson broke the school record with a 6-yard run at the 4:06 mark of the first quarter and then Tony Kostelecky knocked home a 31-yard field goal in the second quarter.
The Cobbers took a 17-0 lead into the break and then broke the game open in the third quarter when they scored on all three of their possessions. Dane Ringquist scored the first of his two touchdowns on a 5-yard TD plunge. His score capped a 7-play, 80-yard drive.
Johnson then got into the end zone on the next two Cobber drives. He ran up the middle for a 26-yard score at 6:02 of the third period and then did a jump cut and raced untouched for 45 yards to complete a 56-yard drive at the end of the quarter.
Concordia scored on its first possession of the fourth quarter to run its streak to four straight scoring drives in the second half. Ringquist went over from 1-yard out to make the final score 45-0.
Hamline only crossed the 50-yard line once during the second half and that came on the final drive when they got the ball to the CC 49-yard line.
Concordia held a 479-124 advantage in total offense. The Cobbers rushed for 392 yards and had four players with at least 40 rushing yards. Besides the 154 from Johnson, Michael Heitzman had a career-high 64 yards while Kragnes rambled for 42 yards and Riley Sheridan added 40 yards.
Kragnes was 7-for-10 for 87 passing yards in his second collegiate start.
Treyton Austvold and Kyle Martin had six total tackles each to lead the Cobber defense. The CC defense also came up with five sacks and one fumble recovery. Andrew Thompson, Willie Julkes, Simon Kasper and Gunnar Kollman all had 1,0 sacks on the day. Julkes also forced two fumbles and recovered one.
NEXT UP IN THE RECORD BOOK: Now that Chad Johnson has broken the school record for touchdowns in a career he can set his sights on a rushing yard record. Johnson currently has 794 rushing yards for the season and 2,231 for his career. The Cobber school record for rushing yards in a career is 3,425 set by Cory Johnson from 2005-08.
NEXT UP IN THE RECORD BOOK 2: Johnson now has 12 touchdowns this season and is chasing the Concordia single-season record of 19 set by Adam Swingdorf in 2007.
MIAC BLANKING: Not only was the shutout the first since the 2010 season but it was also the first blanking for a Cobber team against an MIAC opponent since 2005 when Concordia shutout Gustavus 30-0 on Homecoming.
RED ZONE MANIA: Concordia went 4-for-4 when they had the ball inside Hamline's 20-yard line. The Cobbers have now scored on 17 of their 18 trips inside the Red Zone this season. That 94.0-percent scoring rate is tops in the MIAC and in the Top 10 of Division III.
RUSHING LEADER FLIP-FLOP: Concordia regained the lead in rushing yards per game in the MIAC. The Cobbers overtook St. John's with the 392-yard rushing day. CC is now averaging 248.5 rushing yards per game while the Johnnies are at 233.3 rushing yards per game.
WHAT'S NEXT: Concordia will return home after two away games to host Augsburg on Saturday, Oct. 21 at 1 p.m. The Auggies are 3-4 overall and 1-4 in the MIAC and are coming off a 22-20 loss at home against St. Olaf on Saturday.
CONCORDIA vs. HAMLINE HIGHLIGHTS: