Nov. 2, 2013
VALPARAISO, Ind. - The University of San Diego football team (6-3, 5-1) cruised to a 58-14 road win over Valparaiso (1-8, 1-5) Saturday afternoon. The Toreros offense racked up 521 yards of total offense, with 276 yards through the air and 245 yards on the ground. Senior quarterback Mason Mills had another effective day, completing 19-of-32 passes for 230 yards and four touchdowns. Mills had some help from the senior running back duo of Joe Ferguson and Kenn James, who both rushed for over 100 yards.
The Toreros got on the scoreboard first after driving 69 yards in five plays on their second drive of the day. Fullback Lawrence Larivee scored on a one yard run that was set up by a Thomas Cobbs 24 yard reception.
The Toreros next possession started at the Valpo 48 yard line after Logan Smith returned a punt 45 yards. The Toreros took advantage of the good field position, driving 48 yards in seven plays, capping it off with a Kenn James 17 yard touchdown run to put the Toreros up 14-0.
The Torero defense, which their opponent to 14 points for the second straight week, got on the scoreboard early in the second quarter. After forcing the Crusaders into a three-and-out, DeAngelo Barksdale blocked the Valpo punt, which resulted in a safety.
The Toreros wasted no time tacking on another touchdown. Two plays after wide receiver Brandon White hauled in a 41 yard pass, White caught a three yard touchdown to put the Toreros up 23-0.
The Crusaders answered back with an eight play 80 yard drive that ended with a 15 yard touchdown pass from Eric Hoffman to Tanner Kurmata to bring the total to 23-7 USD, which would be the score at halftime.
The Toreros scored on their first possession of the second half, driving 71 yards in nine plays. Senior wide receiver Sam Hoekstra hauled in a nine yard touchdown to put the Toreros up 30-7. After another three and out forced by the Torero defense, the USD offense marched 70 yards in just five plays, scoring on a 16 yard pass from Mills to Joe Ferguson.
The Crusaders scored their second touchdown of the day early in fourth quarter on an 86 yard touchdown pass from Hoffman to Tony Taibi to bring the score to 37-14.
The Toreros offense was clicking all day and punted only thee times. Mills would find White in the endzone one more time, putting the finishing touches on his day and lifting the Toreros to a 44-14 lead.
Backup quarterbacks Keith Williams and Kyle Miller finished the game out, with Miller going 3-of-3 for 32 yards, including an 11 yard touchdown pass to Robbie Beyer. The Toreros last touchdown came from running back Bug Rivera, who scored from five yards out after being set up by a 23 yard interception return by Nic Henson.
Ferguson finished the day with 125 rushing yards on 15 carries and added a 16 yard receiving touchdown. His backfield mate, Kenn James totaled118 yards on 16 carries with a touchdown. Sam Hoekstra had four receptions for 55 yards and Brandon White had three catches for 49 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Safety Matt Miller lead the team in tackles for the second straight week, totaling 12 stops with a pass breakup. Una Hamala totaled eight tackles and Michael Ruffino had seven tackles with one sack.
The Toreros sit in a three-way tie for first in the PFL with Marist and Butler, who knocked off Dayton 33-30 on the road. Since USD beat both of those teams, they can secure a playoff berth by winning their final two games.
The Toreros will be back on the road next week when they visit Morehead State (3-6, 3-3) for a 10:00 a.m. game.