Sterling Falls to Falcons on Homecoming
Sterling, Kan. - Friends University defeated Sterling College in Sterling on Saturday afternoon. The Falcons used a mirrored 228 yards on both the ground and in the air for a total of 456 yards to beat the Warriors 20-13.
Sterling jumped on the Falcons early in the first quarter, converting a fumble recovering into a touchdown on the ensuing drive. Keoki Burbank scored the touchdown on a quarterback keeper and the Warriors took a 7-0 lead with 9:28 left in the first quarter. Friends answered in the first on a Jayme Bristow pass to Cody Butts for a touchdown. Drew Johnson missed the extra point attempt, and the Warriors held a lead at the end of the first quarter 7-6.
On their second possession of the second quarter, Sterling drove down the field but was stopped short of the endzone by Friends. Doug Dunn would make a field goal to increase Sterling's lead over the Falcons to 10-6. On their ensuing possession, the Falcons would drive into Sterling's redzone and would try to convert on a fourth and goal from the Sterling five yard line. Sterling would hold on the fourth down conversion attempt and would gain control of the ball on their own five yard line. The Warriors would go three and out and be forced to punt from within their own endzone. Friends would capitalize on the good field position, scoring on a Bristow pass to Doug Pierce with 12 seconds remaining in the half. Eric Berner would convert the PAT to give Friends a 13-10 halftime lead.
The Warriors would be forced to punt on their first possession of the second half, giving the ball to Friends on their own 18 yard line. Friends would then engineer an eight play, 82 yard drive that would result in a touchdown scored by Bristow on a quarterback keeper. After the Friends touchdown, the Sterling offense would struggle to stay on the field, being forced into three straight three and out possessions. Friends would dominate the rest of the possession in the third quarter and would hold a 20-10 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Friends would have the ball at the start of the fourth quarter and would drive down into the Sterling redzone again. For a second time in the game, the Falcons would attempt to score on a fourth and goal, and for the second time in the game, the Sterling defense would hold. Even though the Warriors would hold, Friends ran the clock down to 7:34 on the drive. Sterling would be forced to punt on their ensuing drive and give the ball back to Friends. Michael Talton would make a play for the Warriors, intercepting Bristow at the Sterling five yard line. Sterling would convert a 70 reception by Shawn McKnight into a Doug Dunn field goal with 1:51 left to make the score 20-13. With such little time left, the Warriors would have to attempt an onside kick. Friends would recover the kick and would kneel out the clock, holding on for the 20-13 victory.
Talton was the Warrior star of the day. Not only did he intercept Bristow twice, but he had five tackles and was a big part of the Warrior goal line stands in the game. Talton even played a role in special teams, long snapping for the Warriors when starting long snapper Alex Martinez went down with an injury.
With the loss, the Warriors fall below .500 to 2-3 and are 1-3 in the KCAC. Sterling will travel to Tabor next Saturday for a 1:30pm kick-off against the Bluejays. The game will be available on The Sterling College Sports Network with the broadcast beginning approximately twenty minutes before kick-off.