December 10, 2006
Bloomsburg Falls to Northwest Missouri State
MARYVILLE, MO. - Xavier Omon rushed for 149 yards and two scores to lead Northwest Missouri State to a 33-3 win over Bloomsburg University in the NCAA Division II national semifinals. The win puts the Bearcats in the NCAA Division II title game for the second straight season. The loss ended the Huskies 12-game winning streak and denied them their second trip to the title game this decade.
Bloomsburg (12-2) opened the game by recovering the onside kick, but could not move the ball and were forced to punt. Northwest (14-0) then needed just six plays to march 63 yards for the game's opening score. On the drive the Bearcats used a mix of the run and pass on the drive capped off by one yard run by Xavier Omon with 10:40 left in the first quarter.
After forcing a three and out on Bloomsburg's second drive of the game, the Bearcats moved to the Huskies 15-yard line, but were forced to settle for a 31-yard field goal by Tommy Frevert to make it 10-0 with 1:17 left in the period.
Bloomsburg mounted a drive on its third series of the game and drove to the Northwest 22-yard line with the key play being a 21-yard reception by Ryan Schuck on a pass from Latorre. However, the drive stalled and the Huskies had to settle for a career-long 42-yard field goal by freshman Jon Koenig to make it 10-3 with 12:54 left in the half.
Northwest answered back on its next drive driving to the Bloomsburg seven-yard line. In the drive Josh Matthews completed a 28-yard pass to Raphael Robinson on third and 14 which put the at the Huskies 12-yard line. After moving to the Bloomsburg seven-yard line, the drive stalled and Frevert connected on a 27-yard field goal for a 13-3 lead for the Bearcats.
The Huskies appeared as though it would answer the score by Northwest Missouri with a score of it owns. On a first and 10 from their own 20-yard, Jamar Brittingham took a handoff and then tossed a 53-yard pass to Brahin Bilal putting the ball at the Bearcat 30-yard line. After moving to the Northwest 24-yard line, Latorre was sacked twice for two big losses ending the drive.
Northwest appeared to be on its way to another score when Matthews was intercepted by the Huskies Dan Tillitson deep in Bloomsburg territory. The Huskies then moved the ball down to the Northwest 38-yard line aided by two passes from Latorre to Brahin Bilal and a 27-yard run by Brittingham. But, again the drive stalled and the half ended 13-3 in favor of the home team.
On the first possession of the second half, the Huskies had their punt blocked and recovered deep in Bloomsburg territory. After Northwest moved to the Bloomsburg five-yard line, the Huskies defense stiffened, aided by a sack from Justin Colon forcing the Bearcats to settle for a 31-yard field goal from Frevert, his third of the game, to make it 16-3.
Later in the third period, Northwest added its fourth field goal of the game with 3:29 left in the third period to make it 19-3 after three periods.
In the fourth period, Northwest got into the endzone for the first time since the opening period when Oman scored from one yard out with 13:15 left in the game to make it 26-3. On Bloomsburg's next possession, the Huskies moved to the Bearcat 27-yard line, but on fourth and five Latorre's pass fell incomplete ending the drive.
Northwest closed out the scoring with a 12-yard touchdown reception by Raphael Robinson with 2:45 to play in the game.
"Northwest is a great team and they did a super job. We knew if we didn't run the ball it was going to be a long evening and it was," said Coach Hale. "Also, defensively we left our guys on the field too long but I'm proud of the way my guys played all year."
Northwest Missouri State will take on the winner of Delta State and Grand Valley State in the National Championship game.
The Huskies end the 2006 season 12-2 and as the PSAC East and the NCAA Northeast Region Champions.
- Bloomsburg ends the season with 12 wins, tied for the most in school history. It was also the fourth 10+ win season in school history.
- The Huskies' streaks of 12 straight wins and 6 straight road wins were snapped.
- Brahin Bilal's 2006 season is the fifth best for a receiver in Bloomsburg history (1,183 yards).
- Jamar Brittingham went over 1,000 yards for the second straight season and is sixth all-time in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) for rush yards in a career (4,254).
- Dan Latorre finishes the season with 2,398 yards passing, the third best single-season total in school history and the ninth best career total for a Husky.
- The Huskies overall NCAA playoff record is now 6-6.
Photos from the Missouri trip