Beavers earn NSIC North title share with 41-24 win at Wolves

November 14, 20151st2nd3rd4thFinal
Bemidji State131114341
Northern State10140024
1st Quarter
BSUTD13:06Richard 17 Yd Pass From Hein (Aanerud missed kick)
NSUFG05:07Krupka 37 Yd
NSUTD04:27MacPherson (Krupka kick)
BSUTD03:39Noskowiak 56 Yd Pass From Hein (Aanerud kick)
2nd Quarter
NSUTD11:20Ezeff (Krupka kick)
BSUFG06:57Aanerud 37 Yd
NSUTD01:29Pudwill 1 Yd Run (Krupka kick)
BSUTD01:03Adams 5 Yd Run
3rd Quarter
BSUTD04:06Hein 20 Yd Run (Aanerud kick)
BSUTD00:30Noskowiak 7 Yd Pass From Hein (Aanerud kick)
4th Quarter
BSUFG04:22Aanerud 27 Yd
Stats at a GlanceBSUNSU
1st Downs2821
3rd Down Conversions6-167-18
4th Down Conversions0-41-3
Passing (Comp-Att)363 (20-39) 250 (28-46)
Rushing (Att)245 (53) 74 (35)
Total Yards608324
Fumbles Lost02
Beavers earn NSIC North title share with 41-24 win at Wolves
Saturday, November 14, 2015
Beavers earn NSIC North title share with 41-24 win at Wolves

ABERDEEN, S.D. (Clark Swisher Field) -- The Bemidji State University football team claimed its second Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference North Division title Saturday with a 41-24 win at Northern State University. The Beavers (7-4, 6-1 NSIC North) shut out the Wolves (6-5, 6-1 NSIC North) in the second half to finish off the title win.

After Bemidji State allowed two blocked punts returned for touchdowns, the Beavers allowed just 10 offensive points to the Wolves. BSU beat NSU, the team’s first loss in the NSIC North, while totaling 608 yards and allowing 324.

“I couldn’t be more excited and proud for the kids after starting out 0-3. It feels pretty good,” Head Coach Jeff Tesch said. “I knew we’d have some adversity today. Our kids battled through that and our defense performed like they did all year. I’m just really excited for the guys.

“Putting another championship up on the wall is pretty fun.”

Bemidji State drove down on the first possession of the game, 75 yards to grab an early lead. Quarterback Jordan Hein found the Beavers’ leading receiver Juwaan Richard near the line of scrimmage, as Richard then continued up the field for 17 yards and a touchdown. The Beavers “Gang Green” defense forced a three-and-out, leading to another offensive opportunity in the red zone in the first quarter. BSU saw a pass fall incomplete on fourth-and-six to come up empty-handed on the possession.

NSU blocked an Isaac Aanerud punt to grab its first lead of the day, as the ball was recovered and returned for a Wolves’ touchdown. With a 37-yard field goal converted on the previous possession, NSU took a 10-6 lead in the first quarter. Just three plays after the blocked punt, big plays handed the lead back to BSU. Hein completed passes of 25 and 56 yards on the drive, the latter going to wide receiver Jordan Noskowiak for a touchdown to go back up, 13-10, near the end of the first quarter.

The Beavers recorded the first takeaway of the day as the Wolves were driving into BSU territory. An errant snap bounced off NSU quarterback Kyle Lavand as linebacker Jordan Johnson fell on the ball. BSU was forced to punt on the drive, though, which was blocked and returned for another touchdown for NSU and a 17-13 lead.

Following a Bemidji State field goal to tighten the Northern State lead, the Wolves drove 70 yards on seven plays to score their first offensive touchdown of the game. With under two minutes remaining in the half, the Beavers were set up with a scoring opportunity on a 57-yard pass completion to Richard who was forced out of bounds at the eight-yard line. Running back Gena Adams took an option pitch from Hein to cap a 20 second drive and tie the game, following a two-point conversion, at 24 heading into halftime.

The Wolves opened the second half with possession but fumbled the ball away to the Beavers on the first play from scrimmage. BSU drove down to the NSU five-yard line but failed to convert on a fourth-and-two attempt, coming up empty on the third takeaway of the day.

The Beavers began to create separation midway through the third quarter while driving 90 yards on 11 plays, capped by a 20-yard touchdown run by Hein for the game-deciding score. After a Wolves punt on the ensuing possession, the Beavers drove down the field again to go up, 38-24. Wide receiver Christian Lunde caught a 52-yard pass to set up Noskowiak’s second receiving touchdown of the day from seven yards out.

Bemidji State was able to run five minutes off the clock through the fourth quarter to force Northern State into a hurry-up offense. Aanerud made his second field goal of the day off the five-minute drive to put the Beavers up, 41-24. While BSU scored 17 unanswered points to close out the game, NSU was not able to score on four trips to the opposing territory in the final half of play.

BSU’s 41 points is the most scored against NSU since a 41-13 win Oct. 30, 2010. The Beavers shut out the Wolves in the second half, continuing a trend of just 72 points allowed in the second half all season. Bemidji State has scored 97 in the third quarter alone during the season.

The Beavers finished with 608 offensive yards while allowing 324 to the Wolves. Hein threw for 363 yards and three touchdowns, while running back Tahi Nomane led the Beavers’ rushing attack that totaled 245 as a team. Nomane finished with 152 yards on 26 carries. Hein added 34 yards with one rushing touchdown. Richard led the receiving corps with five catches, while Lunde led in yards with 135. Noskowiak, a senior playing in his final game with the Beavers, added 86 yards receiving with two touchdowns.

Defensive backs Kameel Al-Khouri led the Bemidji State “Gang Green” defense with 10 tackles. Fellow defensive back Gunner Olszewski and defensive lineman Jake Wirsching added eight tackles, while Olszewski recorded his seventh interception of the season and Wirsching totaled 1.5 sacks.

The Beavers earn their second NSIC North Division title since 2012.

Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC)