Burnsville, Minn. / Burnsville
The sixth-ranked Bethel football team started its season with a 30-17 victory over Wartburg in front of the Royals' home fans, with senior Josh Treimer (Burnsville, Minn.) turning in quite the defensive highlight reel. The Bethel cornerback intercepted three passes - all in the first half - and returned one for a touchdown as he led Bethel to its first victory of 2013. For his performance, Treimer was named the MIAC Football Defensive Player-of-the-Week.
Treimer made three tackles to contribute to Bethel's defensive effort, but it was his work against the Wartburg passing game that stole the show. He halted the visitors' first drive with a pick at the Bethel 41-yard line, which led to a Royals' field goal. He struck again in the second quarter, this time picking off a pass at the Wartburg 27-yard line and returning it all the way for a touchdown. His third interception came just before halftime to help Bethel take a 16-0 lead into the locker room. Treimer's three interceptions lead the MIAC after two weeks of the season, and he also added a pass breakup to his incredible stat line.
Bethel, which was ranked as high as No. 6 in the preseason, moved up to No. 7 in the D3football.com poll following Saturday's victory. The Royals will have one more nonconference tune-up this week as the rest of the MIAC starts conference play. Bethel hits the road for its first game away from Arden Hills Saturday when it visits Buena Vista for a 1 p.m. kickoff. The Royals open MIAC play on Sept. 28 at Carleton.