Titans dominate Auggie in weekend shutout

Samira Kassem

Illustration: Samira Kassem

The Titans achieved their first shutout of the Augustana Vikings since 2009 this past Saturday, March 27. The final score at the Knowlton Athletic Complex in Rock Island, Il. was 12-0 which moved the Titans to a 1-1 record for the season in CCIW play. This was the Vikings’ first game of the season putting their record at 0-1 so far.

“The coaches  and seniors have attacked each day with such a positive outlook, and unrelenting commitment  to winning. Every individual involved with IWU football will remember how, in the face of insurmountable odds, they found success” senior captain Liam Krammer said.  

When the team finally took to the turf for their first game of the season it had been 490 days since they had last competed. 

“Although games were canceled, Coach Eash kept the Titan Football program humming, bringing us into the structure of a season in late August, September, and October. Without any game on Saturday to look forward to, our players and coaches showed up everyday with the energy and enthusiasm that makes a place good, and we worked,” senior  Zack Tencza said. “We competed with each other, and took the ‘D3 play for the love of the game’ cliche to a whole new level.” 

Tencza attributes Saturday’s shutout to a combined effort from the offence, defence and special teams.  

In tackles, the Titans were led by junior linebacker Robert Neidballa who recorded 10. Closely behind, junior defensive lineman Nicholas DeGregorio had six stops with one sack for 7 yards. 

Seniors Emmett Zima and Mike Murphy finished with five and four tackles, respectively while Murphy had two sacks.

Sophomore linebacker Fernando Chavez and senior defensive back Zach Mitchell recorded interceptions to wrap up the strong defensive showing. 

“Especially on the defensive end, we’re firing on all cylinders and have a lot of  depth; it’s always rewarding and exciting to play on a defense like this,” Krammer said. 

On the offence, freshman quarterback Sage Shindler tossed 19-for-35 for 170 yards and a touchdown. Schindler’s top target, sophomore running back Lucas Segobianno, achieved seven catches for 81 yards and another touchdown while sophomore wide receiver Charlie Hamilton also marked five catches for 38 yards.

 “I think that the team is pretty special. It’s a cohesive unit and everyone is starting to mesh together really well,” junior offensive lineman Jake Tencza said. 

  Also for the offence, junior running back Hamid Bullie led the Titans in rushing yards with 92 yards on 27 carries while junior Anthony Marre added 51 yards on five carries. Marre also recorded a 40-yard scamper–the longest of the day.

“There’s no quit in any of us, or we would’ve quit by now. We are chomping at the bit to explode on every opponent in our way. We have a great team with some crazy awesome players and people showing up everyday to work. It’s a special locker room to be a part of,” Z. Tencza said.