MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan football team scored at least 10 points in each quarter on its way to a 59-3 victory over Tiffin University on Saturday (Oct. 29) afternoon from the Superior Dome. The ‘Cats had a season-high five interceptions and eight different players scored touchdowns.
Junior running back Prince Young got the ‘Cats on the board on NMU’s first drive of the game after eight plays and 38 yards with a 1-yard run.
Senior defensive back Junior Michel made it 14-0, in favor of the ‘Cats, with a 49-yard interception return for a touchdown five minutes later.
Junior Brent Parrett added his first touchdown of the season in the second quarter with a 1-yard reception from senior quarterback Carter Kopach. Sophomore wide receiver Christian Jessie set up the touchdown with a 16-yard reception on the previous play.
The ‘Cats made the score 28-0 after redshirt freshman Gerrit Mortensen threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to redshirt freshman Julian Gaines. It was Mortensen’s first touchdown throw of his career.
Sophomore defensive back Morgan Stenz scored the second defensive touchdown of the game after taking a fumble return 97 yards to the endzone to make it 35-0.
Tiffin (0-9, 0-8 GLIAC) added a field goal before halftime.
Jessie scored his fifth touchdown of the season and junior kicker Rockne Belmonte added a 44-yard field goal to round out scoring in the third quarter.
Junior quarterback Cody Scepaniak and sophomore running back Nick Awrey scored their first touchdowns in a Wildcat uniform in the fourth quarter. Scepaniak had a 1-yard rush to begin the fourth quarter. Awrey scored on a 4-yard run after a 48-yard reception from Scepaniak to freshman wide receiver Josh McNeil.
NMU (4-5, 3-5 GLIAC) finished the game with 467 yards of offense (280 rushing and 187 passing). The ‘Cats were 6-of-15 on third down and 6-for-6 in the redzone.
Kopach finished 14-of-20 for 131 yards and two touchdowns through the air. He also had 55 yards rushing. Scepaniak was 2-of-7 for 45 yards passing and rushed for 27 yards.
Young led the ground attack with 91 yards on 21 carries. Awrey added 74 yards on nine carries.
Gaines had 63 yards receiving while Jessie had 57 and McNeil 48.
Belmonte made a field goal of 44 yards and added six extra points. Junior kicker Keith Wilson added two extra points and each kicker had five kickoffs. Senior punter Garrett Peck had six punts for 238 yards (39.7 average) with two inside the 20 and one touchback.
Sophomore defensive back Brandon Parson and senior defensive lineman Cedric Douglas led the ‘Cats defense with four total tackles each. Parson also tied a Superior Dome record with two interceptions. Senior defensive backs Brennan VanEffen, Marcus Tribble, and Michel also had interceptions for NMU. Sophomore defensive back Morgan Stenz and senior linebacker Robert Edmonds had fumble recoveries.
NMU hits the road next weekend for its final road game of the season, traveling to Saginaw Valley State University. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Saturday (Nov. 5).
Game Notes: The last time NMU scored at least 59 points was Sept. 12, 2009 when the ‘Cats defeated Tiffin, 62-0…It was the first time this season that NMU led in time of possession…Saturday was Band Day in the Dome...Attendance was 2,933.
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