ROLLA, Mo. – A ragged first half put Missouri S&T into a hole it couldn't escape from Saturday night as Northwood handed the Miners a 47-34 loss at Allgood-Bailey Stadium.
The visiting Timberwolves scored on their first six possessions of the contest and rattled off 20 straight points in the second quarter, building a 30-7 lead and never looking back even as the Miners made a run at them in the second half.
S&T's first possession ended with a turnover when Nick Tripp intercepted a Tyler Swart (Dickinson, TX/Dickinson) pass at the Miners' 34-yard line, setting up Northwood's first score of the night when Joe Garbarino connected with Vashon Nutt for a five-yard touchdown pass.
After the Timberwolves added to their lead on a 31-yard field goal by David Riser, the Miners got on the scoreboard when they got the ball back late in the first quarter. Swart completed a pair of passes to Braxton Graham (Seneca, MO/Seneca) totaling 45 yards around a 20-yard run by Deshawn Jones(Olympia Fields, IL/Rich Central), then Jones finished the drive off with a three-yard scoring run.
However, the Timberwolves got another field goal from Riser to extend the margin to six early in the second quarter, then took advantage of a 32-yard punt return by Dwight Blakey as Garbarino connected with John Hall for a 34-yard scoring pass on the very next play.
Another Riser field goal was followed by a blocked punt that Allante Shy recovered in the end zone to give Northwood a 30-7 lead with under four minutes to go in the half.
The Timberwolves were called for unsportsmanlike conduct after the blocked punt and Graham returned the ensuing kickoff back to Northwood's 35, which was then followed by the first of two touchdowns by Spencer Elrod (Lancaster, CA/Eastside) as he got the ball on a reverse and took it to the end zone.
S&T missed a chance to get even closer before halftime after Justin Vaughn (Houston, TX/George Bush) took a Swart pass 62 yards to the Northwood 11, as Ben Styron (Harrisonville, MO/Harrisonville)'s field goal attempt banged off the upright in the final minute of the half. Then at the start of the second half, the Miners forced a Northwood punt, but a fumble on the play gave the ball back to the Timberwolves and they took advantage when Garbarino scored from the two.
The teams traded scores for the rest of the night, as Swart threw touchdown passes of 25 yards to Graham and 55 to Elrod and Roderick Chapman (Los Angeles, CA/Jefferson) returned the kickoff following the Timberwolves' last touchdown of the night 85 yards for a touchdown, marking the 13thconsecutive season that the Miners have scored a touchdown on a return.
Missouri S&T outgained the Timberwolves 398-344, as Swart exceeded his career passing high with 374 yards. Graham had five catches for 137 yards, while Vaughn had 118 yards on his two receptions.
S&T's defense finished the game with six sacks, two coming from Landon Compton (Lamar, MO/Lamar) as he recorded 10 tackles. Austin Truvillion (Kansas City, MO/Park Hill) led the way with 11 stops.
Northwood's defense finished with eight sacks and was the recipients of three turnovers in the game, while the Timberwolves (2-0) ran for 200 yards in the contest.