The Wartburg Knights football team continued their dominant play Saturday Sept. 30, beating the defending IIAC champion Coe Kohawks by a score of 34-7.
The Knights dominated in all facets of the game, but especially in pass defense. The Wartburg secondary held Coe quarterback Quentin White to just 116 yards through the air for the game, only 19 of which came in the first half of play. They also intercepted him five times, with all four starters in the secondary getting a pick. Knights cornerback Peyton Imhof, who picked White off twice in the game, credits the dominance of the secondary to coaching.
“Coach puts us in the right position to make plays. Scouting their offense, putting ourselves in a position to make plays,” Imhof said. “It feels good to make picks every once in a while, especially with five guys getting picks today. That was pretty cool.”
This performance could be an indicator for great things to come for the defensive backfield in the future. All but one of the starting four members of the secondary will be back next season, and Head Coach Rick Willis said he’s proud of how his younger guys are stepping up.
“We thought we had some guys who could make plays back there, and they’re kind of growing up,” Willis said. “Some of those guys have only started four games, so every time they come out they’re getting more experience, more comfortable, more confident. They’re getting better.”
On the offensive side, quarterback Matt Sacia had his biggest game of the year so far, throwing for 360 yards and four touchdowns. Part of Sacia’s success can be credited to the breakout performance of Griffen Brennecke, who nearly doubled his season totals by hauling in seven catches for 154 yards and a touchdown. Brennecke said he and Sacia had been struggling to make a connection early in the year, but today’s performance was a nice change of pace.
“Matt and I, we’ve just been kind of struggling to get on the same page, and we finally clicked today,” Brennecke said. “It was good to see us connect. We did it a lot last year, and it’s been kind of a slow start to this season, but we put it all together today and it felt great.”
The next game for the Knights will be on Oct. 7, as they travel to Pella to take on conference rival Central. Kickoff is set for 1:00 pm.