Northfield was visiting Wabash on homecoming night. The tailgate parties were rocking, former Wabash football players were being acknowledged, the band was playing and it was really cold, unless you were in the press box like those sissy radio broadcasters. LOL
It was a game of unexpected plays and even though the Norse won 39-15, you always wondered what was coming next.
Northfield kicked off to Wabash and after the Apaches moved the ball past the 50 yard line, failed on a 4th down try and turned the ball over to the Norse. Northfield would go nowhere and was forced to punt, which was fumbled and Northfield recovered. With the ball on the Wabash 33, Austin Curless hit Tyler Morgan for 22yds to the Apache 11. One play later Dustin Echard took it in from 11yds out to give Northfield a 6-0 lead. Northfield would squib the kickoff, giving Wabash good field position. Three plays later Nate Price hit Brian Abell for a 35yd scoring strike and Wabash led 7-6. The Apaches caught the Norse off guard with an onside kick and had the ball again.The Norse defense held and we headed for the second quarter.
Northfield steadily moved the ball down the field and then hit pay dirt on an 18yd TD pass play to Jared Kirtlan. Northfield led 13-7. Wabash would take the kickoff and march down the field to the Norse 14, where the drive would stall. Three incomplete passes and Northfield had the ball. Northfield looked as though they would run to play it safe deep in their own territory when Curless hit Andy Roser for 33yds. Curless would hit Roser again to the 27 and then connect with Joe Freiden to the 16. The next play Curless hit Kirtlan for the second time in the endzone with 31.1 seconds left to lead 19-7. The Norse would squib the kickoff again and Hunter Wells recovered. With just 4 seconds off the clock since the second Kirtlan touchdown, the Curless/Kirtlan combo connected again and just like that it was 26-7 at the half.
The Apaches come out of the locker room and converted their second onside kick, but ended up having to punt. Northfield mounted a drive. On 4th and 3 the Norse went for it and Kirtlan come up with a pass that was tipped twice for a first down. Two plays later the Norse fumbled and Wabash’s Richard Bonshire recovered. The Wabash offense stalled, giving Northfield another shot, but on 2nd and 18, Apache Logan McDonald intercepted a Curless pass and ran it back 52yds for a touchdwon, making it 26-15 after a Brian Abell two point conversion. Guess what happened next. Wabash recovered their third onside kick. The Northfield defense held and headed to the fourth quarter with the lead.
On the fifth play of the fourth quarter, Curless found Kirtlan again to the Apache 28. One play later Andy Roser busted up the middle for a 28yd touchdown run with 9:08 remaining to make it 32-15. With the Wabash offense stalling they tried to make something happen, faking a punt that failed. Northfield took advantage and with 5:16 to go Echard ran in his second TD from 6yds out, making it 39-15 which was the final.
Dustin Echard and Andy Roser led the Norse in rushing with 68 and 66 yards. Austin Curless was 11-16 for 186yds, 3TD’s. Roser had 6 catches for 95yds. Jared Kirtlan had 4 catches for 83yds and 3TD’s.