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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

Sept. 29, 2007

Battle Of The Bearcats Tonight at 6 p.m.

MARYVILLE, Mo.-Northwest Missouri State (2-1, 2-0 MIAA) will host Southwest Baptist (0-4, 0-2) in the Battle of the Bearcats at 6 p.m. tonight at Bearcat Stadium. It's the final time these two teams will meet as conference foes. SBU will play as an independent in football starting in 2008.

Northwest has won 12 in a row against Southwest Baptist dating back to 1995, winning by an average of 36.5 points per game. Northwest won last year's meeting 55-9 in Bolivar, Mo.

The 10th-ranked Bearcats are coming off a 53-6 win against Truman in their home opener last week. Xavier Omon tied a school record by rushing for five touchdowns and is currently the second-leading scorer in the nation at 18 points per game. Omon's rushed for 100 yards in eight straight games and is averaging 117 yards this season.

Southwest Baptist has held a lead in the second half of all four games this season, and led in the fourth quarter of three of them. A poor snap from center resulted in a missed field goal in the final minute of the Bearcats 17-16 loss to Missouri Southern last weekend. SBU led Emporia State 28-21 in its MIAA opener with five minutes remaining, but lost 35-28.

Steve Gachette quarterbacks the nation's ninth-best passing attack at 296.5 yards per game. He's thrown nine touchdowns and accounted for 10 of Southwest Baptist's 12 touchdowns this season.

Northwest has scored early and often in its first two league contests. The Bearcats have outscored their MIAA foes 42-6 in the first quarter and 67-13 in the first half, scoring touchdowns on nine of its 14 offensive possessions. Northwest's 39.3 points per game this season leads the league and ranks 13th in Division II.

Home Win Streak: Northwest has won 11 straight games at Bearcat Stadium dating back to 2005. That's tied for the third-longest home win streak in program history.

Start To Finish: Northwest has not trailed in its last 14 conference games dating back to 2005.

Efficiency For Osborn: Northwest quarterback Joel Osborn leads the MIAA in pass efficiency (187.3) but is four attempts shy of qualifying in the national rankings, where he would currently be second. Osborn is 32-of-41 (78 percent) for 439 yards and three touchdowns against one interception.

Coaches Records: Southwest Baptist coach Keith Allen is searching for his first as a collegiate head coach. Northwest coach Mel Tjeerdsma is seven wins shy of 200.

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468