(23) N Illinois 40

(9-1, 5-1 MAC)

Buffalo 9

(1-10, 1-6 MAC)

1:00 PM ET, November 8, 2003

UB Stadium, Buffalo, NY

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#23NIU 10 21 9 040
BUFF 6 3 0 09

Haldi throws for three TDs

AMHERST, N.Y. -- Josh Haldi threw three touchdown passes and Michael Turner ran for 163 yards, leading No. 23 Northern Illinois to a 40-9 victory over Buffalo on Saturday.

Turner also rushed for two scores and caught a touchdown pass, and Haldi finished 14-for-25 for 261 yards and one interception.

P.J. Fleck caught four passes for 142 yards, and Shatone Powers hauled in two touchdown passes for the Huskies, who won their ninth game for only the sixth time in their 102-year history.

Northern Illinois (9-1, 5-1 Mid-American Conference) kept pace with Bowling Green and Toledo in the MAC West. Bowling Green and Toledo are both 4-1.

Toledo was idle this week, and Bowling Green lost to Miami of Ohio on Tuesday.

The Huskies, looking for their first bowl appearance since 1983, have Toledo and Eastern Michigan left. They lost to Bowling Green two weeks ago.

The MAC has two bowl tie-ins -- the Motor City Bowl and GMAC Bowl.

Turner, who entered as the nation's third-leading rusher, opened the game with a 60-yard run to the left, his longest of the season. He eclipsed the 100-yard mark with 3:20 left in the first quarter with a 10-yard run.

It was Turner's 19th career 100-yard game.

He broke the school record for rushing attempts and has carried the ball 883 times in his career, breaking the old mark of 863 held by Allen Ross from 1977-80.

Buffalo (1-10, 1-6) trailed 17-9 and had the ball at the Northern Illinois 5-yard line midway through the second quarter, but Jared Patterson fumbled and the Huskies recovered at their own 3 to end the threat.

The Huskies scored two touchdowns in the final two minutes of the second quarter to put them up 31-9 at halftime.

Buffalo quarterback Randall Secky went 19-for-37 for 176 yards. He also threw two interceptions as Buffalo lost its second straight.

The Bulls got as close as 10-9 after Dallas Pelz's 23-yard field goal at 13:07 of the second.

Steve Azar kicked two field goals for the Huskies and moved into first place on the MAC career field goal list with 69.

The Huskies have won the last four meetings, including a 73-10 win in 2000.