Sept. 17, 2005
No. 10 Northwest Missouri State Defeats Missouri Western 31-21
ST. JOSEPH, Mo. - In the game dubbed "Rivals for Relief," No. 10 Northwest Missouri State stayed a perfect 8-0 when ranked in the series versus Missouri Western as the Bearcats won 31-21 this afternoon at Spratt Memorial Stadium. Both athletic programs set a goal of $10,000, with donations and a portion of ticket sales, to go towards Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.
Northwest moves to 3-1 on the year and 2-0 in the conference. Missouri Western drops its second straight on the season and stands 2-2 overall and 0-2 in league action.
Northwest scored first in the game, the third occasion this season, as senior quarterback Josh Lamberson found sophomore tight end Jon Goss from three-yards out with 6:39 left in the first quarter. That play directly followed a blocked punt by senior defensive end Dave Tollefson, which gave the Bearcats great field position in Griffon territory.
Missouri Western answered back with a 12 play, 68-yard march to tie the score at 7-7 just before the second quarter. Quarterback Michael Burton found the end zone from one yard out - Northwest aided that drive with two defensive penalties.
The Bearcats scored twice in the second quarter thanks to two tosses from Lamberson. Freshman wide receiver Kendall Wright corralled his first collegiate touchdown catch on an eight-yarder at the 13:21 mark while senior running back Mitch Herring, who replaced the injured Xavier Omon, mirrored Wright's catch with 7:43 remaining before the half.
Northwest held a 19:06 to 10:54 time advantage in the first half gathering 214 total yards to just 87 by the Griffons.
After both teams punted to start the second half, the hosts reached the Bearcat 14-yard line before a defensive momentum-builder. Senior safety Kelly Williams blitzed and poked the ball from Griffon quarterback Michael Burton. Williams recovered the ball and gave his club the ball at the 25-yard line. However, Northwest was forced to punt and the Griffons Jarrett Brooks took the ensuing punt 68-yards for a score.
Northwest made it 24-14 with 3:35 left in the third on a career-best 42-yard field goal by freshman Tommy Frevert. A five-yard pass to Brandon Hale brought the Griffons within a field-goal at 24-21 with 11:10 left in the game.
On the next possession for Northwest, Wright snared a 49-yard pass to put the ball on the Griffon 21-yard line. Four plays later, Lamberson found the endzone from four yards out. It was his second straight game with a rushing touchdown.
The Northwest defense held the Griffon offense to 234 total yards of offense on 65 plays (3.6 avg.), including just 99 passing yards.
Lamberson accounted for four touchdowns, three through the air, as he passed for 242 yards on 21-of-30 passing. Herring finished with 134 yards on 24 carries. It was Herring's first 100-yard rushing game since Oct. 17, 2002. Wright caught five balls for 79 yards and senior Andre Rector totaled 76 yards on six catches.
Tollefson posted 4.0 sacks, just .5 shy of the school's single-game record set by Matt Uhde in 1995. He added six tackles. Williams had a team-high eight tackles and sophomore defensive end Dallas Flynn notched eight tackles and 0.5 sacks as well.
The Bearcats next take on Missouri Southern on Oct. 24 on Family Day in Maryville. Northwest is looking for its 11th straight win in the series as kick-off is set for 1 p.m.
NOTES: Northwest improves in the overall series to 15-10 including 9-4 in St. Joseph … The Bearcats have won its last six MIAA regular season road games dating back to 2003 - the last loss came versus Missouri Western on Oct. 25, 2003 … Quarterback Josh Lamberson moved to sixth in career passing yardage (4,497 yards) and fifth in career completions (338) … Notable players out of today's game, running back Xavier Omon (ankle), defensive tackle Steve Williams (groin) and offensive tackle Cody Campbell (hip) … The Bearcats have out-gained their opponents in each of their first four games after a 369 to 234 advantage … The 49-yard catch by freshman Kendall Wright was the longest offensive play from scrimmage for the Bearcats … Running back Mitch Herring, who went for 134 rushing yards today, totaled just 47 net yards last year in a reserved role … Northwest moves to 35-4 when scoring 28 or more points since 2000.
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