Defense Propels Northwest to Region Championship

Published 11/30 2013 11:26PM

Updated 12/01 2013 02:22AM

(MARYVILLE, Mo.) The Northwest defense held Minnesota Duluth in check long enough Saturday for senior quarterback Trevor Adams to build a big lead on the way to 45-21 Bearcat win.

The Bulldogs (11-2) entered the red zone twice in the first half but failed to score both times -- once on a missed field goal, and again on a defensive stand on fourth and goal.

Northwest (12-0) grabbed momentum back when they forced the turnover on downs. Sophomore quarterback Brady Bolles led a drive to the Duluth eight yard line that led to a field goal. The Bearcats took at two-score lead on their next possession with a touchdown strike from Adams to Clint Utter with 46 seconds left in the first half. Northwest took a 10-0 lead into the break.

Adams carried the momentum into the second half hitting on three touchdown passes -- an 18-yarder to Reuben Thomas, from 50-yards out to Jason Jozaites, and a three yard strike to Utter. Northwest led 31-0 entering the fourth quarter.

The Bulldogs made a push scoring 21-unanswered points to get within ten of the Bearcats with 6:26 left in the game, but a two-point conversion attempt failed keeping Duluth two scores down.

Northwest kept Minnesota Duluth at arms length with a pair of Brady Bolles touchdown runs.

Adams was 16-24 for 277 yards, four touchdowns and three interceptions.

Thomas led the 'Cats in receiving with eight catches for 154 yards and a score.

Northwest sacked Duluth quarterback Drew Bauer seven times, led by Matt Meinert with three.

The Bearcats are now 8-2 in games played Thanksgiving weekend over the last ten years. They advance to the Super Region 3 championship against St. Cloud State December 7th in Maryville. The Huskies beat Minnesota State 54-48 Saturday afternoon.

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