Marshall’s Mattke Field has become known as one of the toughest places to play in Minnesota with the Tigers running up a 29-game home winning streak through the last six years.
The last team to beat Marshall at Mattke Field — Waseca in the 2014 Section 2AAAA playoffs.
The Bluejays, ranked No. 5 in Class 3A, repeated the feat Friday with a 21-7 victory over the No. 2-4A Tigers in Marshall.
Waseca (3-1) got it done with some big plays in the second half from senior Kyreese Willingham. With 11 minutes, 52 seconds to play and the Bluejays hanging on to a 14-7 lead, quarterback Ryan Dufault found Willingham for a 40-yard touchdown on a third-and-15 to extend the lead to 21-7 after the extra point kick.
Then two possessions later for Marshall, Willingham intercepted a tipped pass to help seal the victory.
“Super proud of the kids and the staff,” Waseca head coach Brad Wendland said. “It’s been way too long since we beat them.”
It’s been six years since the Bluejays defeated the Tigers.
Dufault helped carry the offense with 142 yards on 27 carries. He also completed 3 of 5 passes for 63 yards.
Dufault started the scoring with a 2-yard touchdown run with 3:19 to play in the first quarter on a fourth-and-goal from the 2 to cap an 83-yard drive.
Christian Rodriguez scored from one yard out with 2:45 to go in the first half to extend the lead to 14-0.
Marshall (3-1) scored with 7:46 left to play in the third quarter when quarterback Brevin Runia scored to make it 14-7 after the PAT kick. The score came following an interception and the Tigers drove 79 yards. Runia finished with 98 yards rushing on 12 carries, most of which came in the second half. Runia also completed 11 of 20 passes for 119 yards and threw two interceptions. Dravyn Spies intercepted Runia in the first half, too.
Marshall dealt with a banged up offensive line and Waseca attacked the line in the first half, coming up with four sacks and a fumble recovery.
“Our coaching staff on defense did a good job of getting them prepared,” Wendland said. “We’re an aggressive defense as far as blitzing and stunting.”
The win will serve the Bluejays well in the QRF standings, but it also means a lot for the team, which had the Marshall game on its mind when the schedule came out.
“To come here and be the team that broke the streak, to be the team to do that is something they feel great about,” Wendland said.
Waseca will take on New Ulm (1-3) Friday in Waseca. The Eagles lost 42-20 to Fairmont Friday.