Sept. 3, 2005
No. 7 Nebraska-Omaha Hangs on for 28-23 Victory Against No. 5 Northwest
OMAHA, Neb. - No. 7 Nebraska-Omaha (2-0, 0-0 NCC) used a 21-0 start and held on for a 28-23 win over No. 5 Northwest Missouri State (1-1, 0-0 MIAA) football tonight in front of 9,700 fans at Al Caniglia Field. It was a homecoming of sorts for Northwest as 14 current players on the roster hail from the Cornhusker state.
The host Mavericks came out on fire scorching the scoreboard for 21 points straight in just over 15 minutes to begin the game. One of the drives was methodical as a 10-play, 80 yard march culminated in a 15-yard pass from Brian Masek to Chris Denney. At that point, UNO led 14-0 just over nine minutes into the contest.
In the opening moments of the second frame, UNO running back Jamar Day, who finished with 188 rushing yards, ran in from 57 yards on the only play of the drive. That play pushed the lead to 21-0.
After a botched Maverick punt attempt at the 6:52 mark of the second quarter, Northwest tackled the punter at the UNO six-yard line. Two plays later, senior quarterback Josh Lamberson found a wide open Trey Simeone, a redshirt freshman tight end, in the back right corner of the end zone to bring the score to 21-7 going into halftime.
Northwest received the second half kick-off and drove 48 yards on 14 plays which ended on a 34-yard field goal by freshman Tommy Frevert. After the hosts were forced to punt on the ensuing possession, Northwest sophomore running back Xavier Omon capped off a 14-play, 92 yard drive with a three-yard jaunt with 14:16 to go in the fourth quarter. That brought Northwest to within 17-21.
UNO countered with a score before another Omon touchdown carry, this time from 40 yards out, to put the score at 28-23 in favor of the Mavericks.
The Northwest defense held UNO and forced a punt with under three minutes remaining in the contest. A Lamberson 29-yard toss to senior wide receiver Andre Rector pushed the ball into UNO territory on the second play of the drive. However, Lamberson was intercepted at the Maverick 33-yard line and UNO ran out the clock to secure its third straight home victory against the Bearcats.
Omon ended with 181 yards on a career-high 34 carries. His two rushing scores moved him into a tie for eighth on the all-time TD list with 21. Lamberson finished 26-of-38 for 266 yards and one touchdown toss. Rector tied his career-high of last week with nine receptions on 97 yards.
On the defensive side, senior Dave Tollefson recorded a career-high nine tackles including a forced fumble. Junior Kyle Kaiser added eight tackles. Junior Quinten Womack picked up his first career interception in the third quarter.
Northwest opens up its 2005 home season by welcoming Truman State in the Centennial Bowl on Saturday, Sept. 10. Kick-off from Bearcat Stadium is scheduled for 1 p.m.
NOTES: Nebraska-Omaha leads the overall series 10-7-1… Lamberson got his streak of nine straight games of two or more touchdowns snapped as he tossed one TD … There are 14 Northwest players that dot the current roster including seven from the Omaha area ... UNO was selected as the preseason media favorite to win the North Central Conference after they were crowned 2004 champions … UNO is 49-6 in all home games since 1996 … Lamberson moves to sixth on the all-time list for attempts (465) as he went for 38 attempts tonight … Omon's 181 yards moved him to ninth on the school's lifetime charts (1,852 yards) …There were a combined seven turnovers with Northwest having four.
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