ASHLAND, Ohio –The Northern Michigan University football team held a 7-0 lead early in the game against Ashland on Saturday, but could not turn the lead into a win and dropped a 47-21 decision. After picking up its first win of the season last week the Wildcats are now 1-5 overall and in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) while the Eagles improve to 4-1 overall and in the conference.
NMU scored on its second possession of the game as the ‘Cats used a five-play 58-yard drive which was capped off by Fred Wells catching an 18-yard touchdown pass from Buddy Rivera with 5:18 showing on the clock. The extra point was good. The Eagles would score twice in the first quarter to take a 14-7 lead. Jaman Javey tied the game with a 28-yard run at 2:41 then Jon Schroeder tacked on a one-yard burst with 49 seconds left in the quarter. Both extra points were good.
The second quarter saw the home team add to its lead with a 10-yard pass from Billy Cundiff to Alan Dunson with 7:16 left in the quarter, the kick failed and the Eagles were now up 20-7.
Javey scored his second touchdown of the day when he sprinted in from 14 yards out at 5:47 of the third quarter. The kick was good and AU now held a 27-7 lead. Dan Elmore got the ‘Cats back on the board when he hauled in a 30-yard strike from Buddy Rivera with 4:28 left in the quarter. The drive used 1:13 off the clock as the ‘Cats went 67 yards in three plays. Anthony Leandri’s kick was good and NMU was now down 27-14.
The fourth quarter saw AU add three more scores to take care of the game. David Ziegelhofer caught a 15-yard pass from Cundiff just seconds into the quarter (14:48). The two-point conversion failed and the score was now 33-14. AU’s next score was set up by a blocked punt, Ray Kent found pay dirt from two yards out at 14:08 as the kick was good (40-14). The Eagles final score of the day came when John Ferguson scored from three yards out at 5:34 and with the good kick the home team was now up 47-14. Ben Hempel scored his first rushing touchdown on an eight-yard run with 3:26 left in the game as the kick was good for the final score.
The Eagles tallied 580 yards of total offense on 91 plays. NMU had 324 yards of total offense on 74 plays. AU rushed for 290 yards on 59 carries while the ‘Cats had 125 yards on the ground on 33 carries. In the air the Eagles passed for 290 yards while NMU had 199 yards. Over the past couple of games the ‘Cats have had the ball longer, but not today as AU held a 35:09-24:51 edge in time of possession.
Mark Bossuah led the ‘Cats on the ground with 44 yards on 13 carries. Rivera was 12-33-1 passing for 144 yards. Dan Elmore and Brad Anderson each had three catches on the day. Elmore had 60 yards receiving while Anderson had 14.
Nicholas Bloch led the defensive effort with 12 total tackles (11 solo), one sack (-10 yards) and two tackles-for-loss (-15 yards).
NMU will be home next Saturday (Oct. 20) to host the Michigan Tech Huskies at 1 p.m.
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Sports Information Director