Cortez's Kicks Key in VCSU Football win
The Valley City State football team picked up its fifth win of the season Saturday, beating NCAA Division III opponent Gustavus Adolphus College 16-0 in St. Peter, Minn.
The Vikings got the win behind solid defense, as well as key kicks from Thomas Cortez, whose leg accounted for 10 of the Vikings' 16 points.
VCSU scored on the opening drive of the game, getting behind a solid run game from Taylor Cino and Derek Elliot.
The drive ate up nearly five minutes of the clock, ending on a 31-yard field goal by Cortez.
Valley City's defense then forced Gustavus to punt on the ensuing drive. When Valley City to the ball back two and a half minutes later, they started a drive that burned another 10 minutes off the clock as Cino and Elliot continued running and Tommy Zinke nailed a few short passes.
Cortez ended the drive with a 32-yard field goal to give VCSU a 6-0 lead with 13:39 left in the first half.
VCSU didn't score again until the fourth quarter, when Cortez hit his third field goal, a 37-yarder that capped off a 74-yard drive.
VCSU's only touchdown came late in the fourth, when the Vikings got the ball at the Gustavus 25 after a turnover on downs. Cino had a 1-yard run, which was followed by a 7-yard run by Elliot. Cino then ran the ball 17 yards for a touchdown with 5:15 left.
The VCSU defense limited Gustavus to 224 yards and had three sacks for 17 yards.
Late in the game, VCSU stopped two key drives that could have put points on the board.
In the third quarter, Gustavus had moved the ball 41 yards and attempted to kick a field goal, which was blocked by VCSU's Matt Craft.
With just over two minutes left in the game and Gustavus at the 13-yard line, Troy Still picked off a pass at the one-yard line.
It was the first shutout VCSU has posted all year.
Cino led Valley City with 118 rushing yards and also had 10 receiving yards. Elliot had 86 rushing yards and 28 receiving. Zinke finished 14-23 passing for 151 yards.
The Vikings had 350 total yards of offense with no turnovers.
VCSU continues the season Saturday at home against Jamestown.