Something’s gotta give
GAME OF THE WEEK
St. John’s (3-0, 1-0 MIAC) vs. St. Thomas (2-1, 1-0 MIAC), 1:10 p.m., Saturday at Target Field: The 87th meeting of the Johnnies and Tommies features the top two teams in the MIAC preseason poll. The Johnnies are ranked No. 6 in the AFCA Division III poll, while the Tommies are ranked No. 11. The Johnnies lead Division III in scoring offense (67.7 points per game) and scoring defense (7.0). The Tommies are averaging 44 points per game. The Tommies have won the past three meetings, but the Johnnies have won 18 of the last 25.
WEEK 4 STORYLINES
• If the past three games between Gustavus and Hamline are any indication, their meeting Saturday in St. Peter, Minn., will produce a lot of offense. The teams combined for 998 yards last year in Hamline’s 42-40 victory. The teams combined for 836 yards in 2015 and 941 in 2014.
• The NSIC is in its fourth and final week of inter-division play. The eight South Division teams have won 18 of the 24 games from the North Division. Three South teams (MSU Mankato, Sioux Falls and Winona State) are 3-0. Only one North team (St. Cloud State) has a winning record. Last year, South teams won 20 of the 32 games.
• Since opening the season with a 98-0 loss at St. John’s, St. Scholastica has regrouped with victories over Greenville and Westminster. The Saints are 27-2 in the UMAC since the start of the 2014 season. The favorites in the UMAC preseason poll, they will play host to Minnesota-Morris (0-3, 0-2 UMAC) on Saturday. The Saints lost 34-24 last season in Morris.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Daniel Stratton, DB, Northwestern (St. Paul): The senior from Lucerne Valley, Calif., is second in the UMAC in tackles with 39. Last week, he had 13 tackles, 1½ sacks and a fumble recovery in a loss to Greenville.
Shane Zylstra, WR, MSU Mankato: The sophomore from Spicer, Minn., caught eight passes for 204 yards (third most in Mavericks history) and three TDs in the Mavericks’ 38-23 victory at Minnesota Duluth last Saturday.
BY THE NUMBERS
4 Times in the past five seasons that Concordia (Moorhead) has started a season 3-0.
229 Rushing yards (second most in school history) by MSU Mankato sophomore Nate Gunn against Minnesota Duluth.
325 Passing yards by Minnesota Duluth sophomore QB Ben Everhart in his first collegiate start. Everhart completed 24 of 43 yards in the Bulldogs’ loss to MSU Mankato.