COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Northern Michigan University football team remains winless in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference after losing 45-7 to Ohio Dominican University on Saturday (Sept. 15) afternoon from Columbus, Ohio. After a scoreless first quarter, the Panthers were the first on the board with a field goal in the opening minutes of the second quarter, and it was all ODU from there.
The 32-yard field goal was good by kicker Brent Wahle with 14:52 to go in the first half.
The only Wildcat (1-2, 0-2 GLIAC) touchdown came with just four seconds to go in the third quarter on a nine-yard pass play from redshirt freshman quarterback Ryan Morley to junior wide receiver Christian Jessie. The touchdown came after four plays and 23 yards. With the lone touchdown, the ‘Cats were down 40-7 for the closing quarter of the game. Senior defensive lineman Zach Anderson had an interception and returned it 22 yards to set up the short four-play 23-yard drive.
Ohio Dominican’s (2-1, 1-1 GLIAC) first touchdown came on a one-play drive with a 93-yard pass from quarterback Mark Miller to Ronald McCloud with 3:22 to go in the first half. The Panthers drive started after a forced punt on fourth down for the Wildcats.
On the following drive, Morley’s attempted pass fell into the hands of ODU’s Martavius Lewis at Northern’s 25-yard line. Martavius ran the ball back to the two-yard line. The Panther’s second touchdown came on the next play on a two-yard run by Tajuan Green, expanding the lead to 0-17 with three minutes to go in the first half.
ODU would close out the first half of play with another touchdown after taking over on downs from their own 36-yard line. Miller once again connected with McCloud for a 53-yard score to put the Panthers up 24-0 going into the halftime break.
The Panthers opened up the second half of play with a possession going 65-yards on ten plays to take 3:32 off the clock. Miller ended the drive with a 28-yard pass to Abe Johnson, putting ODU up 0-31 with 11:21 to go in the quarter.
The Wildcats were forced to punt on their next possession, but would hold the Panthers to only a field goal. Wahle’s field goal attempt was good from the 39-yard line.
With 4:59 left on the clock in the third, ODU’s quarterback Tajuan Green found Casey Williams for a 49-yard touchdown.
The final Panther touchdown came after Morley’s pass was intercepted at the Panther 27-yard line by Billy Eakins. Miller connected with McCloud for their third touchdown of the game on a 14-yard pass with 4:08 to go in the game.
Morley finished the game 15-of-36 for 180 yards in the air. He had his first touchdown pass of his career and was intercepted three times.
The leading rusher for NMU was senior running back Prince Young with 70 yards on 27 carries.
Sophomore receiver Julian Gaines had three catches for 52 yards. Junior Trever Kruzel had 43 yards on four catches.
On the defensive side, senior Eddie Knoblock led the way with nine tackles (four solo, five assisted). Redshirt freshman Loran Jaddou and sophomore Nick Krause were right behind with seven tackles each.
NMU had five penalties on the afternoon, while ODU had four. The Panthers finished with 29:42 minutes of possession, and the ‘Cats with 30:18.
Northern will return home next Saturday (Sept. 22) for a homecoming matchup against Ashland. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. from the Superior Dome.
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