Northwestern rips Jamestown to complete perfect season
Red Raiders finish GPAC Championship season and lock up top seed in NAIA playoffs with 40-11 victory
ORANGE CITY, IA (Dakota News Now) - Senior wide receiver Michael Storey tied the program’s all-time career receptions record with his 11 catches and 181 receiving yards, as the top-ranked Northwestern College football team (11-0, 10-0 GPAC) completed their first undefeated regular season since 1988 with a 40-11 win over the University of Jamestown (2-9, 2-8 GPAC) this afternoon at De Valois Stadium.
“Our guys did a good job of embracing the challenge and finding ways to make plays when we needed to,” noted head coach Matt McCarty. “Jamestown has a solid group that competes really well. It wasn’t easy today.”
The defensive line was dominant all afternoon long. Trystin Voss (So., Rogersville, Mo.) landed a new career-high with three tackles and moves into a tie for the team lead in sacks. Jacob Dragstra (So., Sioux Center, Iowa) led the team with his eight tackles from his defensive line position and the defense picks up a season-high eight tackles for loss.
Northwestern got off to a slow start on the day, but that would not affect the defensive performance. The first two Raider drives ended in punts, as the Northwestern offense mustered just 16 yards in eight plays. It would be the Jimmies who would strike first with a 27-yard field goal after moving the ball 48 yards on seven plays. Jamestown would hold that 3-0 lead through the first quarter.
Northwestern would respond with 33 unanswered points to take control of the game. The Red Raiders would not keep people waiting in the second quarter scoring 16 unanswered in the quarter alone. Eli Stader (Jr., Cedar Grove, Wis.) hit his fourth 50+-yard field goal of the season in the early minutes of the quarter, nailing a 51-yarder to tie the game up at 3-3.
The arm of Jalyn Gramstad (Jr., Lester, Iowa) would become the story the rest of the way. He would throw for four passing touchdowns, tying his season-high. It quickly became apparent that the Red Raiders wanted to get the ball into the hands of their playmaker on the outside in Michael Storey (Sr., Spencer, Iowa). Gramstad would find him for a 2-yard touchdown pass for the first touchdown of the game and giving Northwestern the 9-3 lead with eight and a half minutes left in the half. With three minutes before the half, Gramstad would find Konner McQuillan (Sr., Leavenworth, Kan.) out of the backfield for a six-yard score and extending the lead to 16-3 at the break.
Midway through the third quarter, Stader would hit his second field goal of the day with a 30-yarder to make it 19-3. The very next possession, following a Jimmie punt, Northwestern would strike for a one-play scoring drive when Gramstad stood tall in the pocket, taking a hit, and yet delivering a beautiful ball for Ty Schafer (INFO) for the 50-yard touchdown toss. In route to his record day, Storey would bring down his second touchdown grab of the day with a 20-yard reception to make it 33-3 after three quarters of play.
“Michael was huge for us today,” noted McCarty! “He is such a reliable playmaker!”
Early in the fourth quarter, Jamestown would punch it in for their lone touchdown of the day as John Grann would find Ryan Collins for a 42-yard touchdown connection. Following a successful two-point conversion, Northwestern would lead 33-11. Logan Meyer (Jr., Alvord, Iowa) would cap off the scoring on the day with a 12-yard scamper to make it 40-11 Northwestern.
- Michael Storey sets a new career-high with 181 receiving yards on 11 catches, marking his 14th-career 100-yard receiving game.
- He also ties the program record for career receptions at 282.
- The Red Raiders improve to 21-0 with Jalyn Gramstad as the starting quarterback.
- Northwestern put up 438 yards of offense and held Jamestown to 197 yards.
- Gramstad was 17-for-31 through the air with 258 yards with four touchdowns and an interception.
- Logan Meyer led the rushing attack with his 84 yards and having the lone rushing score.
- The 50-yard touchdown reception for Ty Schafer marks his longest-career reception, plus longest touchdown reception.
- Freshman Josh Basilevac made his Red Raider debut, completing his one pass attempt for 12 yards.
- Trystin Voss was dominant all game long, having a game-high three tackles for loss with a sack.
- Voss now moves into a three-way tie for the team lead in sacks this season (5).
- Cody Moser records his NAIA-leading ninth interception of the season, now recording an INT in seven games this season.
- Morris Hofer collected his second interception of the season.
- NWC has now recorded a takeaway in 36 of the late 39 games.
- In the final GPAC game against the Jimmies, Northwestern improves to 8-1 and McCarty moves to 6-0.
The Red Raiders will await their first opponent of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Football Championship Series (FCS) next Saturday with their first game set for November 25 in Orange City.
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