Alex Powders kicked a 35-yard field goal with 2:25 to go and the Wayne State defense followed with a final stand to knock off No. 11-ranked Minnesota Duluth 31-28 Saturday evening at Malosky Stadium in Duluth, Minn.
Duluth got on the board first, taking advantage of a Nick Bohn interception to take a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter.
Wayne State followed with a big second quarter, scoring on all four possessions. Bohn scored on a one-yard run to tie the game, and Wayne State took advantage of a Duluth fumble to take a 14-7 lead on a 23-yard pass from Bohn to Taurean Grady.
Wayne State made it 21-7 on their next possession as Bohn found Anthony Watkins for a 12-yard scoring strike, and after Duluth scored a quick touchdown to cut the lead to seven, Wayne State came right back with Watkins scoring on a 48-yard run for a 28-14 lead.
Duluth scored again before halftime and tied the game early in the fourth quarter. The game stayed that way until the Wildcats put together a 16-play drive that ended in Powders’ field goal with 2:25 to go to give Wayne State the lead.
Duluth got into Wildcats’ territory on the ensuing drive, but the defense came up big as Ijaaz Rashid recovered a Bulldog fumble at the Wayne State 36-yard line to seal the win.
Wayne State’s defense forced five turnovers in the game and Bohn was 13-of-22 passing for 221 yards. Grady had a career night of eight catches for 133 yards and a touchdown.
It is the first Wildcat win over a ranked opponent since beating No. 25 Winona State 27-7 on Oct. 4, 2014 and only the second win in 16 meetings against the Bulldogs.
Wayne State, 3-1, is back home next week to host Winona State Saturday at 1 p.m. at Cunningham Field.
Complete story in next week’s edition of The Wayne Herald.