Press Box


MARQUETTE, Mich. â€Â“ Saturday night atthe Superior Dome there was a little football game behind two teams in searchof a win.  The Northern Michigan University Wildcats (1-1, 1-1 GLIAC) werehosting the Mercyhurst College Lakers (0-2, 0-2 GLIAC).  The â€Â˜Cats scored 20points in the final 15 minutes of play to come from behind to take the game40-35 and pick up their first win for the 2005 season.


NMU has had trouble the past two seasons plus in puttingsome points up on the scoreboard in the first quarter.  But on Saturday nightAbram McCoy caught a 19-yard pass from Buddy Rivera at 5:50 of the quarter forthe early 6-0 lead.  The extra point kick was no good.  The Lakers came back alittle over a minute later (4:44) to take the 7-6 lead on a Dan Schuler 18-yardpass from Jeff Nowling and the extra point kick was good.


NMU would score twice in the second quarter to take a 20-7lead.  First up was McCoyâ€Â™s second TD on the night from Rivera for a 16-yardstrike at 11:08.  Rivera then kept it himself for a one-yard sprint into theend zone; the two-point conversion was good.  The Lakers made it interestingthe last two minutes plus of the half.  Matt Smith scored on a one-yard runwith 2:08 left before the intermission, which cut the lead to 20-14.  TheLakers went into the locker room with a 21-20 advantage after Schuler caught athree-yard pass from Brandon Staley with 14 ticks left on the clock.


When Matt Smith caught a 13-yard TD strike from Staley at6:33 of the third quarter, the Lakers had a 28-20 lead.  But that would changeas the game moved into the fourth quarter.  With the NMU team doing theirtraditional fourth quarter chant the team was poised for a comeback.  BradAnderson, playing in his second game as a â€Â˜Cat after transferring from MichiganTech, scored three TDs in a span of about 10 minutes to give the â€Â˜Cats thewin.  His first TD of the night was at 11:24 on a two-yard run.  The two-pointpass was no good.  At this time the Lakers still held onto a two-point lead at28-26.  Next on the TD parade was a six-yard sprint with 8:16 left in thegame.  NMU had regained the lead once again, 34-28, with a good two-pointconversion.  Andersonâ€Â™s final TD of the night was a 19-yard run on a fourthdown play with 1:34 left in the game.  Riveraâ€Â™s pass failed for the two-pointconversion, but the â€Â˜Cats were up 40-28.  The Lakers added a late touchdownwith 23 seconds left in the game on a one-yard pass from Staley to John Egbertfor the final score. 


Anderson led the â€Â˜Cats on the ground with 137 yards on 17carries.  He also caught two passes for six yards.  Rivera on the night was17-24-0 in the air for 196 yards.  He had 26 yards on the ground on 12carries.  Staley for the Lakers had 276 yards passing on 15-21-1.  Schulerhauled in six passes for a game-high 168 yards.  Vincent Mayfield led the â€Â˜Catswith seven receptions for 82 yards. 


The total offense was almost even.  The â€Â˜Cats had 412 yardsof total offense while the Lakers had 410 yards.  NMU had 216 yards on theground and 196 in the air.  The Lakers on the other had had 363 yards passingand 47 yards rushing.  MC had the ball for a little over 10 more minutes thanthe â€Â˜Cats with 35:06 to 24:54 for the home team.


NMU will hit the road for their first road trip of theseason when they will cross the bridge and head towards Ohio and The Universityof Findlay for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff next Saturday night (Sept. 10).








Prepared By
Dave Faiella
Sports Information Director