Ferris State, led by their fierce ground game, put away Northwood with decisive 42-10 road win to remain in top five in conference play.
The win came despite Head Coach Tony Annese being absent on the sideline. Annese’s suspension for a locker room incident during half ime of the Michigan Tech game overlapped the Northwood game. Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Line Coach Rob Zeitman took the reins for the game in Annese’s absence.
Despite getting off to a slow start to begin the first quarter of play, the Bulldogs started to heat up late as redshirt freshman running back Kitwana Clark struck first with a rushing touchdown to kick off the scoring for the game. The eight-yard scoring run came with around five minutes left in the first quarter to cap off an eight play, 42 yard, scoring drive.
Ferris scored again in the first on a 57-yard touchdown connection between sophomore quarterback Jason Vander Laan and sophomore receiver Antonio Agurs to put the Timberwolves in a 14-0 hole to end the first.
Northwood later scored in the second quarter from a three-yard touchdown pass from Timberwolves quarterback Mitch Robinson and receiver Eric Williams; but not before Vander Laan ran in a nine-yard red-zone touchdown of his own. The score read 21-7 midway through the second quarter.
The Bulldogs started to pile it on following Northwood’s scoring drive, as Ferris accounted for the next two scores in the matchup. The first coming late in the second quarter as Vander Laan punched in another goal line touchdown to put the game at 28-7 prior to halftime.
The second being early in the third quarter as junior receiver Jake Lampman caught a six-yard touchdown pass from Vander Laan. It would be Ferris’ only score of the third quarter.
After a 22-yard field goal from Northwood kicker Keegan Haggerty, Bulldog freshman receiver Dewayne Boston grabbed a 31-yard touchdown pass from Vander Laan to end the scoring for the game midway through the fourth quarter as Ferris’ defense shut down the Timberwolves for the remaining ten minutes.
The Bulldogs left Hants Stadium with their seventh win of the season and remained in third place in their conference.
Both facets of Ferris States offensive attack were led by Vander Laan, who finished with 157 passing yards and three passing touchdowns. Vander Laan also rushed for 194 yards and two touchdowns. Agurs also had a solid game with 99 all-purpose yards and a receiving score.
The Bulldogs defense was dominant throughout the game, only allowing 244 total yards one touchdown the entire game to the Timberwolves. The defense was headed up by senior safety, Marvin Robinson, and junior linebacker, Darnell Morris, as they combined for sixteen tackles. Morris also had 2.5 tackles for loss and junior defensive end, Carlton Johnson, had Ferris’ lone sack for a 17-yard loss.
This game marks the fifth time the Bulldogs have scored over 40 points in a game this season. Ferris finishes out the regular season schedule at home next weekend as they face Northern Michigan University on Nov. 16 at Top-Taggart Field with kickoff at noon. Annese will be back on the sideline for the game as his suspension ends on Nov. 14.