Story and photo courtesy of Northern Iowa Athletics
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa football team picked up their third consecutive win against Missouri State Saturday, winning 38-13 to close out their 2012 season.
Sawyer Kollmorgen finished 20 of 25 passing for 265 yards and two touchdowns. David Johnson led the Panthers on the ground with his sixth straight 100-plus yard rushing game finishing with 116 yards. Brett LeMaster led UNI through the air with 106 yards and a touchdown.
The UNI defense forced Missouri State to a quick three-and-out and gained possession on the UNI 28-yard-line to start the game. After a penalty against the Panthers, David Johnson scored on their first offensive play going for a 77-yard rushing touchdown, giving the Panthers a 7-0 lead with 12:55 left in the first quarter.
Missouri State went for two incomplete passes and was forced to punt on their next drive after Jordan Gacke tackled running back Vernon Scott after a five-yard gain. Kollmorgen drove the Panthers down field with a 15-yard pass to Brett LeMaster and a 20-yard pass to Chad Owens to set up Tyler Sievertsen for a 36-yard field goal. Sievertsen gave UNI the 10-0 lead, knocking 2:39 off the clock for seven plays.
Senior Wilmot Wellington kept the Bears from getting into UNI territory off a thunderous hit on a MSU receiver giving them a loss of four yards and forcing them to punt again. UNI took over on their own 11-yard-line.
After Carlos Anderson and Owens led the Panthers down the field to end the first quarter, the tandem of Kollmorgen and Johnson fooled the MSU defense on a half-back pass. Johnson threw the ball down field to LeMaster for a 36-yard touchdown reception with 14:53 left in the second quarter. The UNI drive gave the Panthers a 17-0 lead, taking 5:28 off the clock for 11 plays and 89 yards.
J.J. Swain continued the Panthers dominant defensive performance with his second interception of the season at the 11:50 mark in the second quarter. He regained possession for UNI on the Panther 27-yard-line. After a nice 10-yard gain by Anderson, Kyle Bernard was forced to punt for the first time, giving MSU possession on the MSU eight-yard-line.
UNI added to their lead with nine seconds left in the half off an eight-yard pass from Kollmorgen finding Terrell Sinkfield in the end zone for his fourth touchdown of the season. The UNI drive gave the Panthers a 24-0 lead and knocked 5:25 off the clock for 12 plays and 80 yards.
The Panther defense opened up the second half by forcing another turnover. Jordan Webb recovered the fumble, giving UNI the ball on their own 19-yard-line with less than 10 minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Kollmorgen connected with LeMaster on the next offensive drive for a 43-yard pass-and-catch play putting UNI on the MSU 28-yard-line. After a 28-yard reception by Sinkfield to the MSU three-yard-line, Johnson scored his second touchdown of the game, off a three-yard rush giving the Panthers a 31-0 lead.
UNI’s defense forced the MSU Bears to another quick three-and-out and ran out the clock to end the third quarter.
Anderson scored his second touchdown of the season just ten seconds into the fourth quarter off of a 60-yard pass from Kollmorgen, giving the Panthers a 38-0 lead with 14:50 left in the game. The drive took 2:39 off the clock for six plays and 72 yards.
MSU was able to drive to the UNI one-yard-line with 6:12 left in the fourth quarter. The Bears got on the scoreboard with 5:41 left in the game, making the score 38-7 off Mikael Cooper-Falls’s six-yard rush. Cooper-Falls and the rest of the MSU offense took 4:48 off the clock for 13 plays and 92 yards.
After two three-and-outs by MSU and UNI, MSU added to the score off a seven-yard receiving touchdown from Dorian Buford. UNI blocked the extra point making the score 38-13 to end the game.