Beavers Send Off Seniors With Win, Awaiting a Final Challenge

Tyler Brunner, Assistant Sports Editor

Beaver Football had a roller coaster of a season in 2019. The team was coming off a 1-9 season last year, and looked to make a statement this season. While the Beavers looked to be promising, they had a few bumps along the way. With one game remaining, they looked to finish out the season with a win. In one shining moment, the Beavers entered J. Leslie Rollins Stadium for one final time this season to give their seniors a memory they will never forget. 


The 2018 season for the Beavers left them defeated and wrung out to dry. Defeating only one opponent all season long and going winless in conference play, the Beavers had some remodeling to do in the 2019 season. Their first challenge was at Hamline, whom they defeated last season 39-27 at home. The Beavers showed the ARC conference teams they were a different team this season by defeating Hamline by a score of 51-7. BVU kept Hamline to only 32 total yards while they would go on to throw for 283 yards and rush for 269 yards. A convincing start to a promising season, but this was only the start of a long season. 


The Beavers kept the good times rolling as they hosted Concordia Nebraska for the first home game of the season. The season prior, the Beavers lost a close game against the Bulldogs losing 20-27, and this season proved to tell the same story with a twist. Down 24-0 coming into the second half, BVU needed a miracle to pull off a comeback of this caliber. Bryland Menicucci started off the scoring for the Beavers by plummeting into the end zone for a 2 yard touchdown. The big break came when Morris Aranda intercepted the Bulldogs and brought the ball to the house for a pick six and brought the Beavers closer to victory. The biggest pop from the hometown crowd came when Josh Lange connected to Dylan Laughlin for a 3 yard touchdown pass to win the game in regulation 27-24, improving to 2-0 for the second time under Coach Mollring 


While these two victories provided momentary celebration, the party would not last forever. The Beavers would go on a 6 game losing streak, which included a loss at homecoming against Nebraska Wesleyan (16-37), a close overtime loss to Loras (39-40), and a blowout handed to them by Simpson (49-0). So, coming into the final home game of the season against Loras, it was hard to see the bright side of this season. However, what happened next came as a surprise to everyone. 


Throughout the first quarter, the winless Luther Norse were holding their own against BVU keeping the game at 14 apiece. Bryland Menicucci and Adrian Griffin provided the Beavers with their first two touchdowns of the day, and this was just the beginning. In the second quarter alone the Beaver scored four times, twice by Bryland Menicucci, and another two by Eric Pacheco, who now is second all time for receptions with 160 in his career.

Pacheco has also broken another record, being the only Beaver in program history to have multiple 1,000 yard seasons, and is only 84 yards shy of breaking the single-season record for total yards, being behind Gunner Gilliand (1,101). Leading 40-27 at halftime, the Beavers knew what they had to do. Like a song on repeat, it was the same song and dance in the third quarter. Another three touchdowns by Pacheco, Menicucci, and Griffin to make it a 60-34 game. Menicucci helped out BVU’s run game plenty by gathering 122 yards off 12 carries, while Griffin managed to add another 67 yards, nine rushes, and two touchdown for himself. In the end, the Beavers walked off Peterson field with a 60-40 victory and momentum coming into their final game of the season. 


Even though the record spells out a different story, this BVU team has great things to be proud of. They were able to provide the BVU fans with some amazing home victories, broke single-season and all-time records, and proved they can hang with anyone in the ARC conference. Even though there is much to improve upon, Coach Mollring and his staff have some positive takeaways to bring into their final game and next season. The Beavers will be traveling to Dubuque, Iowa in an attempt to finish out their season on a high note. BVU currently holds a winning record against Dubuque since 2000, being 11-8 overall. That game will be broadcasted live on KBVU 97.5 The Edge and will start around 12:30 central time.