Sept. 24, 2011
Bearcats Blackout Tigers, 70-17
MARYVILLE, Mo. - Another emotional Saturday afternoon provided a huge spark for the No. 1 ranked Northwest Missouri State Bearcats as they cruised to a, 70-17 win over Fort Hays State in front of 8,313 fans at Bearcat Stadium.
It was the first ever Blackout at Bearcat Stadium as Northwest (4-0, 3-0 MIAA) proved worthy of their new No. 1 ranking as they posted their fourth consecutive game over the 50 point plateau. The Bearcats also honored former head coach, the late Scott Bostwick on Family Day providing extra emotion for players and fans alike. Fort Hays (1-3, 1-3 MIAA) dropped their second consecutive game and eighth straight to the Bearcats.
Sophomore quarterback Trevor Adams earned his second start of the year and was impressive leading the Bearcats to five scoring drives totaling 3:79. Adams and the Bearcats caped their first score of the day on a nine play 59 yard scoring drive that took nearly as long as the next four Bearcat drives at 3:30.
Adams went to work quickly driving the Bearcats down the field on the first drive as James Franklin took three straight tries before finding the end-zone from the one yard line. He would finish 17-of-23 for 346 yards and four touchdowns only throwing two incompletions in the first half.
Picking up where they left off last weekend, Adams and the Bearcat offense would post 70 plus points for the second consecutive week. Adams found Tyler Shaw early for a 34-yard touchdown pass and catch, taking only six seconds putting Northwest up, 14-0 early.
Shaw and Adams would hook up on more time on a 58-yard catch and run midway through the second quarter. It would come just minutes after Adams would find Kyle Kilgore for back-to-back touchdowns to start the second quarter.
The first Kilgore touchdown would come on a 14-yard pass down the middle of the field as he walked into the end zone to extend the Northwest lead to, 21-3. Adams and Kilgore would connect again, but it was a nifty move off the sideline to pull Kilgore free of his defender as he went untouched for a 41-yard touchdown.
"I saw the defensive tackle and couldn't let him tackle me," said Kilgore, who finished with four catches and a career high 120 yards. "But once I got past him I had blockers in front of me and it was wide open to the goal line."
FHSU would score just before the half after a mix-up in the Bearcat secondary allowed the Tigers to drive to the 14-yard line. Tanner Hageman would slip behind the Bearcat secondary one more time as caught the first Blake McAhren touchdown pass of the afternoon. McAhren finished 16-of-18 for 187 yards and two touchdowns.
Northwest would finish with a season high 589 yards of total offense while holding the No. 2 rushing offense to only 152 yards on the ground. After five turnovers last week, the Bearcats erased the mistakes and came out plus two in turnover margin.
"I'm very proud of our kids," said Adam Dorrel who is only the second Northwest head coach to begin his career 4-0. (Jim Redd started 5-0 in 1976) "We might have come out a little too jacked up, but we made some adjustments and our kids fixed it. We're playing really good football right now and have gotten better each week."
The only blemish on an almost perfect afternoon for the Bearcats was 10 penalties for 128 yards. One penalty, an illegal block, erased the only defensive touchdown 42-yard pick six by Bryce Enyard. However, Northwest would score on the first play following the interception as Denver Lohnes rumbled 32-yards for his second score of the season.
Jordan Simmons, who entered the day second in NCAA Division II in scoring, would pick up his ninth touchdown of the season. Simmons would carry the ball seven times for 45 yards in fairly limited action.
For the second week in a row Franklin would lead Northwest in rushing with 11 carries for 82 yards. He would also find the end zone three times bringing his season total to seven touchdowns on the year.
The win also extends the Bearcats MIAA record conference winning streak to 49 games. It is also the 15th game during the streak in which Northwest has scored 40 or more points.
Up next for the Bearcats is rival Pittsburg State in the 10th Annual Fall Classic at Arrowhead. Northwest will enter the Fall Classic ranked No. 1 for the first time in history of the neutral site series; however the Bearcats have met with the Gorillas twice as the top ranked team with the last coming Sept. 16, 2000 when the Bearcats knocked off sixth-ranked PSU, 35-28. Kickoff from Arrowhead is set for 2 p.m.
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