Jaydon Haag drilled an eventual game-winning 42-yard field goal with under nine minutes to play as UW-Oshkosh pulled out a 26-23 victory at UW-Stout during the WIAC football opener Saturday (Oct. 5) in Menomonie.
Haag, who had not previously attempted a field goal in his two years as a Titan, made both of his field goals Saturday and all four extra points.
After Haag's 42-yard boot, UW-Oshkosh (3-1, 1-0 WIAC) forced a UW-Stout punt following a three-play drive with 7:20 remaining. The Titans proceeded to pick up three first downs and drain all but 57 seconds off the clock before UW-Stout got the ball back at its own 12-yard line by stopping a carry by Titans quarterback Kobe Berghammer on fourth-and-1.
UW-Oshkosh then secured its 10th consecutive victory over the Blue Devils following a sack by Brady Heimer and three incomplete passes on the ensuing four plays.
UW-Stout (1-3, 0-1 WIAC) trailed by scores of 16-0 and 23-7 in the second quarter before knotting the score at 23 on an Alec Benzinger 32-yard field goal with 11:18 left in the fourth quarter. The Blue Devils, who have not led the Titans in a game since 2012, failed to advance the ball past their own 28-yard line during the last 11 minutes. UW-Stout was held to just 52 yards on 15 plays in the entire final period.
UW-Oshkosh, which created the game's lone turnover, concluded the contest with advantages of 378-294 in scrimmage yards, 174-87 in rushing yards, 20-16 in first downs, and 34:12 to 25:48 in time of possession.
Berghammer went 15-for-30 passing for 155 yards with one touchdown while adding a team-leading 17 carries for 45 yards and a rushing score for the Titans. He now has eight touchdown passes and two rushing scores on the year.
Titans running back Peter MacCudden ran nine times for 31 yards, caught two passes for 32 yards and tossed a 28-yard touchdown on his first career pass attempt.
UW-Oshkosh's Riley Kallas had a team-high four receptions for 35 yards and one touchdown, while Ryan Hayes was on the receiving end of MacCudden's scoring strike that provided the Titans a 16-0 lead midway through the second quarter. The touchdown grabs were the second of the year for both Hayes and Kallas.
Logan Heise led the UW-Oshkosh defense with seven tackles, and Brandon Hughes, Tyler Jensen and Connor Zirpel each added six stops. Kollyn Beyer recovered a fumble for the Titans, who also received sacks from Brandon Kolgen and Kyle Scharenbroch. Eleven different players have now contributed toward UW-Oshkosh's WIAC-leading 16 sacks.
UW-Stout's Sean Borgerding completed 11 of 29 passes for 207 yards and one touchdown. He also paced the Blue Devils with 13 rushes for 41 yards and a score as UW-Stout was limited to 4.8 yards per play and 2.7 yards per carry.
Levy Hamer paced all players with four receptions for 88 yards and one touchdown for UW-Stout.
Luke Wilz and Brandon Vecchio both collected a game-high 11 tackles for the Blue Devils while Jed Schlegel added 10 stops.
UW-Oshkosh jumped out to its 16-0 lead behind Berhammer's 14-yard scoring pass to Kallas in the back of the end zone at the 6:31 mark of the first quarter, a 33-yard field goal from Haag with 14:10 to go in the second period, and MacCudden's 28-yard heave to Hayes off of a pitch from Berghammer with 8:51 left in the second.
Borgerding then lofted a 34-yard touchdown pass to Hamer to cut the UW-Stout deficit to 16-7 with 7:44 remaining before intermission. Berghammer answered with a 1-yard scoring run that upped the Titan cushion to 23-7 with 33 seconds to play in the second quarter, but Benzinger drilled a 28-yard field goal as time expired in the opening half to pull the Blue Devils within 23-10.
UW-Stout fully erased its 16-point deficit after Borgerding ran into the end zone from 9 yards out with 8:17 to play in the third quarter and Benzinger connected on field goals from 35 yards at the 2:39 mark of the third period and a 32-yarder that tied the score at 23 with 11:18 remaining in the game.
The Titans' game-winning drive was set up by a 37-yard kickoff return by Chris Hess. The Blue Devils were also penalized 15 yards for a facemask on the play, allowing UW-Oshkosh to begin the possession at the UW-Stout 38-yard line. A 14-yard pass from Berghammer to Kallas advanced the ball to the Blue Devil 25-yard line before three straight incompletions preceded Haag's 42-yard field goal.
UW-Stout has not defeated UW-Oshkosh since a 28-14 decision Nov. 13, 2010.
UW-Oshkosh returns home to host UW-Stevens Point next Saturday (Oct. 12). Kickoff for the 119th meeting of the longest rivalry between two public schools in NCAA Division III is set for 1 p.m. at J. J. Keller Field at Titan Stadium.
Photo by UW-Stout Sports Information