Falcons kick down Eagles
Freshman Chad Blair kicked a pair of second half field goals and the UW-River Falls football team held on to defeat Northwestern College, 20-17, for its first win of the season Saturday in St. Paul.
Blair connected from 20-yards out midway through the third quarter to extend the Falcons' lead to 17-3, and after Northwestern pulled to within a touchdown early in the fourth quarter, he nailed a 36-yarder with 6:30 remaining to make the score 20-10. That field goal proved to be the difference as the Eagles scored again with three minutes left to make the final 20-17.
This Saturday UW-RF, now 1-1, will host Alma College (Mich.) in the annual Homecoming game beginning at 1 p.m. at Ramer Field. The Falcons defeated Alma, 25-20, last year in Michigan but the Scots are coming off a 51-3 victory over Rockford College last week in which they piled up over 500 yards of total offense.
Last Saturday, John Schimenz scored on a pair of three-yard touchdown runs to stake the Falcons to a 14-3 halftime lead.
Greg Klingelhutz returned the opening kickoff to midfield where, on 3rd-and-4, quarterback Ryan Luessenheide completed his first pass of the game to Michael Woodward for a gain of 18 to the Eagle 28. Luessenheide ran for another first down to the Northwestern 18, and after three straight Ahmad Palmer carries, Schimenz bulled over from three yards out for the first touchdown of the game.
Northwestern cut the gap to 7-3 with a 23-yard field goal by Cody Crum early in the second quarter, but the Falcons came right back with a 13-play, 75-yard drive, capped by another three-yard touchdown run by Schimenz to extend the lead to 14-3.
Luessenheide hit Woodward three times for 34 yards during the drive, twice on third down to keep the drive going.
Falcon linebacker Curtis Johnson of Hudson intercepted Eagle quarterback Zach Tarter at the Falcon 29 yard-line with 40 seconds remaining in the second quarter to keep the score 14-3 at halftime.
Blair capped the Falcons' first drive of the second half with a 20-yard field goal, then added the difference-maker from 36-yards out in the fourth quarter.
Following Northwestern's final touchdown of the game that made the score 20-17, the Falcons ate up the final three minutes of the game with the Eagles out of timeouts.
Luessenheide completed 13-of-18 passes for 170 yards with one interception while Palmer finished with a team-high 114 yards rushing on 18 attempts. Woodward led the Falcons in receiving with five catches for 67 yards.
Former Wildcat Justin Parsons had 10 tackles to lead the UW-RF defense while Cole Lowell, and Justin Eloranta recorded nine tackles each. Parsons also had two tackles for loss of yardage and forced a fumble.