MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Miner’s Cup is back in Marquette after the Northern Michigan University football team defeated Michigan Tech, 34-27, on Saturday afternoon at the Superior Dome. The victory was preserved thanks to a stand by the NMU defense. MTU had the ball first and goal at the NMU two-yard line and were rejected by the Wildcats in four tries with about 18 seconds left in the game. With the win the ‘Cats are now 2-5 on the season overall and in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). The Huskies are now 4-5 overall and 4-4 in the GLIAC.
Buddy Rivera had a career day as he set two NMU career records. He set new career marks in total offense and touchdown passes. Rivera currently has 7,038 yards of total offense and 47 touchdown passes. The old records were 6,807 yards of total offense which was held by Tom Bertoldi. Matt Heard and Bertoldi shared the career record for touchdown passes with 45. Rivera ended the day with 229 yards passing on 12-21-0 with three touchdown and 26 yards rushing on 10 carries.
Back to today’s game. MTU scored first when Phil Milbrath scored from three yards out at 14:57 of the second quarter for the 7-0 lead. The ‘Cats would get on the board when Anthony Leandri kicked a 32-yards field goal with 11:44 showing on the clock (7-3).
NMU would strike twice for TDs in the second quarter to take a 17-7 lead. First, Fred Wells caught a 79-yard strike from Rivera with 7:38 left on the clock. Luke Carlson then caught a 35-yard pass from Rivera with 1:10 left in the quarter. Leandri made both extra points and the ‘Cats were up by 10.
The Huskies cut the lead to 17-14 when they went 61 yards in three plays and used 20 seconds off the clock for a touchdown. Keith White hauled in a 14-yard pass from Steve Short and the extra point was good with 44 ticks left before half (17-14). NMU received the ball back after a nice return by former Huskie Brad Anderson. Leandri kicked a 49-yard field goal, for his longest of his NMU career, with no time left on the clock for the 20-14 lead.
The third quarter saw the ‘Cats scored two more touchdowns. Wells caught another pass from Rivera, but this time it was for a 20-yard score with 9:55 left in the quarter. The kick was good and the ‘Cats were now up 27-14. Mark Bossuah made the count 34-14 when he snuck in from three yards out at 2:48 with the good extra point.
The Huskies scored twice in the final quarter, but came up just short. Milbrath scored both TDs for MTU. His first scored came at 13:00 on a one-yard run, but the extra point good was no good as the lead was now 34-20. With 6:17 left in regulation, Milbrath scored from 15 yards away from the end zone. This time the kick was good to make the score 34-27.
NMU had 348 yards of total offense on the day while MTU had 510. MTU rushed for 239 yards thanks to a game-high by Milbrath’s 126 yards on 22 carries. NMU ended the game with 119 yards on the ground. Bossuah led the ‘Cats with 72 yards on 20 carries. In the air the Huskies had 271 yards. Wells had two catches for 99 yards. The NMU defense came up big with three interceptions. Nicholas Bloch had 11 total tackles (four solo and seven assisted).
The home finale for the 2007 will be next Saturday (Oct. 27) at 1 p.m. against Mercyhurst College.
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Sports Information Director