But the Huskies instead ran into a determined Milwaukee Marquette squad that pitched a 25-0 shutout and stifled quarterback Nick Sotiros.
The senior had averaged more than 200 yards and 14 completions in his first two games of the season. Against the Hilltoppers, Sotiros completed just eight of 21 passes for 78 yards and one interception.
Hale (1-2, 0-2) was hampered by offensive miscues most of the night, especially at critical junctures of the game.
After linebackers Alex Schwab and Mitch Chevremont stuffed Marquette running back Alex Klestinski on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line in the first quarter, the Huskies suffered a safety on the next play.
The Hilltoppers took advantage and drove 50 yards on 11 plays on their first possession of the second half, capped by a six-yard touchdown strike from Greif to tight end TJ Novotny.
Hale again had two opportunities to shift momentum in the third quarter, but were unable to capitalize on either.
Senior defensive back Richard Magray recovered a Marquette fumble late in the third quarter, only to see the Huskies gave it right back on the next play when running back Zach Smith was stripped on an option play.
On the ensuing offensive series by Marquette, Schwab picked off a Greif pass and returned it 40 yards to put Hale near midfield.
The drive stalled at the Marquette 41 yard line and Sotiros came up a yard short of picking up the first down after a 10-yard scramble.
Marquette head coach Jeff Mazurczak credited his team’s ability to make the most of its opportunities while holding the Hale offense in check after turnovers.
“The momentum swung very quickly in this game from that goal line stand that they had to the safety we put up to the interception and the fumble transition,” Mazurczak said. “I think our defense kept us strong this game and gave the offense opportunities to get their feet under them.”
For Hale, Ehret hopes his team can rebound after what he said was a lackluster week of practice leading up to the Marquette game.
The Huskies won their opener, 21-20 over Lake Geneva Badger, then fell 21-14 in double overtime to Brookfield Central.
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