Game Recap: Football | | Alex Prazuch
Photos: Paige Wilcox
CHICAGO, Ill. — The Vikings football team faced off with Carthage this past Saturday, losing by a score of 33-14. North Park stayed in stride with the Firebirds throughout the 1St half but was ultimately unable to carry that momentum into the 2when.
The game’s first drive yielded a Carthage TD which was then followed up by a pair of 3-and-outs by both sides. North Park’s ensuing drive netted a 47-yard deep ball from Matt Eck to Wesley McCloud that brought the Vikings into the red zone. Dante Cerasuolo would make the most of the scoring chance, punching a short run in for a Vikings TD to tie the game at 7 after Michael Messersmith’s BED.
Carthage registered a TD on the next possession as the end of the 1St quarter neared, to which North Park again responded quickly. The Vikings maintained possession through the end of the quarter and started things off in the 2whenwith a 27-yard passing TD from Matt Eck to AJ Harris to tie the score at 14-14. Carthage followed that up with another score of their own though, marking the 4th straight TD drive between the two sides and giving the Firebirds a 20-14 advantage. Carthage had the chance to add to this lead with a last-minute drive before halftime, but North Park’s Theo Smith picked off the Carthage QB to deny them the opportunity.
The Vikings would go scoreless in the 2ndwhen half, ultimately resulting in a 14-33 final score. Looking to individual performances, North Park’s offense was spurred by the receiving duo of AJ Harris and Wesley McCloud who combined to make 9 catches for 192 yards with Harris scoring a TD. Dante Cerasuolo handled the other Vikings’ score and also led NPU in rushing with 39 yards. Matt Eck threw for a season-high 299 yards. Defensively, Jaydin Miller produced a standout game with 11 solo tackles, 1.5 TFLs, a half-sack, and a forced fumble that Jonathan Thomas recovered. AJ Henry helped Miller complete the sack and also broke up a pass at the line of scrimmage.
North Park’s next opponent will be Illinois Wesleyan who the Vikings take on next Saturday, October 15th, out in Bloomington, IL. Game time is set for 1:00 PM CST.