MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University football team put on a display Saturday afternoon at the Superior Dome. NMU shutout Tiffin University 62-0 in the home opener for the Wildcats. It was NMU’s first shutout at home since a 24-0 decision over Michigan Tech during the 2000 season and it was the most points an NMU football team has scored in the Superior Dome since a 58-0 win over St. Francis during the 1998 season. It was also Bernie Anderson’s first shutout at the helm of the NMU program.
NMU is now even on the year with a 1-1 slate overall and in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). Tiffin falls to 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the GLIAC.
The ‘Cats scored 48 points during the first 30 minutes of play. On Tiffin’s first punt of the game, Antonio Wallace took it to the house for an 82-yard return (12:55). The extra point was good by Rockne Belmonte and the ‘Cats were off and rolling 7-0. The first time NMU had a drive they scored in three plays when Mark Bossuah took it in from a yard out (10:45). The extra point was good and the home team had a 14-0 lead. Brandon Smith scored the next TD a little over four minutes later (6:15) on a 20-yard run. The kick failed and the ‘Cats were now up 20-0. Bossuah capped off the first quarter with his second touchdown, another one-yard plunge (3:54). NMU was now up 27-0 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter saw Wallace add two more scores as he took it in from four yards out (10:26) and then with 1:25 left before the half he scored from six yards out. Both extra points were good and the ‘Cats were now up 41-0. Blake Crider caught a 24-yard pass from Carter Kopach with 13 ticks left before the half. Belmonte’s extra point kick was good.
The third quarter saw Wallace add a 21-yard sprint to pay dirt at 11:50 for a 55-0 lead with the good extra point. NMU added a score in the final quarter on a one-yard sneak by Brennan VanEffen with 6:16 left in the game. Anthony Leandri added the extra point for the final score.
NMU had 30 first downs to three for the Dragons. Offensively the ‘Cats tallied 532 yards of total offense (395 on the ground and 137 in the air). Defensively the ‘Cats held the Dragons to 84 yards for the game of total offense (54 rushing and 30 passing).
Brandon Smith led the NMU rushers with 91 yards on seven carries. Bossuah added 86 yards on 14 carries. Wallace had nine carries for 73 yards. Carter Kopach and Ben Hempel combined for 137 yards on 12-19-1. Craig Thompson, Blake Crider and Wallace each had two receptions.
Mike Boren led the ‘Cats with six total tackles as he had three solo and three assists tackles. Three ‘Cats had five total tackles each (Nathan Yelk, Zach Gauthier and John Blessing). NMU dominated the possession time at 41:56 to 18:04. Tiffin crossed into NMU territory only once during the game.
NMU is on the road next week (Sept. 19), but they won’t have to leave the U.P. as they travel to Houghton to take on the Michigan Tech Huskies. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
### NMU ###
Sports Information Director