Tommies lead stubborn Pipers 20-9 at half

Senior tight end Logan Marks caught two touchdown passes from sophomore quarterback Matt O’Connell to help St. Thomas take a 20-9 halftime lead over the Hamline Pipers in a MIAC football game Saturday at Klas Field.

The Tommies survived a sloppy second quarter that included five interceptions, four by the Pipers.

The Tommies scored their first touchdown when O’Connell completed a 10-yard pass to Marks on a second-and-goal play with 4 minutes 20 seconds remaining in the first quarter.

The first quarter ended with the Tommies leading 7-0.

St. Thomas extended its lead in the second quarter on O’Connell’s 7-yard pass to Marks, giving the Tommies a 14-0 edge.

Senior kicker John Broback put Hamline on the board with a 10-yard field goal in the second quarter.

Sophomore running back Zach Deitchman scored Hamline’s first touchdown with 1:44 to play in the first half, but the Tommies blocked the extra-point kick, making the score 14-9.

Junior quarterback Ben Duncan made an appearance in the second quarter, but O’Connell returned with three minutes remaining. Duncan came back into the game when O’Connell left with what appeared to be a leg injury.

Duncan scored his first touchdown as a Tommie, rushing to the end zone on a first and goal play seconds before the half ended. Hamline broke up the two-point conversion, giving St. Thomas a 20-9 lead.

The Tommies remain ahead of the Pipers 20-9 heading into the second half.

Sean Crotty can be reached at