One week after being gaining just 187 yards in a 21-14 overtime loss to Peru State, the No. 13 Wildcats managed just 74 yards to the Crusaders' 408.
"They had a good game plan and it worked effectively," Baker football coach John Frangoulis said, "and we got our butt kicked. They played well and we're not very good right now. We didn't look very well coached, and obviously that's my fault."
Yardage wasn't the only offensive area lacking for Baker, which had just eight first downs to Evangel's 25. BU was 0-for-11 on third-down converstion attempts.
As many offensive problems as the Wildcats had, they still held a 14-13 lead at halftime thanks to two touchdowns set up by blocked punts.
Down 7-0 in the second quarter, Baker's William Harris blocked Nick Ragain's punt and recovered it on Evangel's 10-yard line. Two plays later, Martin Updike tied the game on a 10-yard slant pass to Ryan Costello.
The Wildcats (0-2 overall, 0-1 Heart of America Athletic Conference) forced Evangel to punt on its next possession, and another low snap rolled past Ragain to the Crusaders' 12-yard line and was recovered by Baker's Deion Christophe.
The Wildcats gained their initial first down of the game four plays later, and Terence Spencer scored on a two-yard run for a 14-7 lead.
"We made some big plays," Frangoulis said, "but we didn't make enough of them. We wanted to do a little more option in the first half but we weren't able to because of the field position. They dominated the field position and it's hard to get things going when you're backed up in your red zone most of the time."
Baker didn't get past its own 30-yard line in its first four possessions and passed the 50-yard line just once other than the two blocked punts.
On the other hand, Evangel (1-0, 1-0) moved within Baker's red zone on its first three possessions, and owned the Wildcats through the air. Brent Mitchell was 16-of-31 for 228 yards and two touchdowns.
"He's a new starter, a young man they moved from tight end last year," Frangoulis said. "He came in and had a great game and their offensive line, particularly in the second half, kind of dominated us."
Dimitrius Breedlove was the primary recipient of Mitchell's tosses, grabbing 10 catches for 141 yards and one score. Josh Allen caught Mitchell's other touchdown pass, a 36-yard fade late in the second quarter to bring the Crusaders within one, 14-13.
Evangel took a 16-14 lead early in the third quarter on a 25-yard field goal by David Peppleman and padded its lead with two-yard scoring runs by Marshall Dos Reis and Mitchell.
Updike couldn't keep up with his counterpart, completing just 4-of-21 passes for 38 yards, and was sacked 6 times.
"They were blitzing the inside gaps and we weren't protecting him," Frangoulis said. "We were varying the snap counts but that didn't matter. Most of the time Martin was throwing off his back foot and nobody could have had a good game under that pressure."
Baker will get a chance to work out some of its kinks on offense Saturday against Avila, who is in its first year of HAAC play, at Kansas City Rockhurst.
Evangel 29, Baker 14
Evangel 7 6 9 7 -- 29
Baker 0 14 0 0 -- 14
Evangel -- Dimitrius Breedlove 16 pass from Brett Mitchell (David Peppleman kick)
Baker -- Ryan Costello 10 pass from Martin Updike (Michael Brennan kick)
Baker -- Terence Spencer 3 run (Brennan kick)
Evangel -- Josh Allen 36 pass from Mitchell (kick failed)
Evangel -- Peppleman 25 field goal
Evangel -- Marshall Dos Reis 2 run (kick blocked)
Evangel -- Mitchell 2 run (Peppleman kick)