Sam Houston 27

(8-2, 3-1 Southland)

Northwestern St 45

(7-3, 3-1 Southland)

5:00 PM ET, November 13, 2004

Turpin Stadium, Natchitoches, LA

1 2 3 4 T
SHSU 17 3 0 727
NWST 14 7 10 1445

Top Performers

Passing: D. Vinson (NWST) - 68 YDS, 1 TD

Rushing: S. Sampson (NWST) - 22 CAR, 104 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: D. Doyle (NWST) - 2 REC, 39 YDS

Northwestern St. 45, Sam Houston St. 27

NATCHITOCHES, La. (AP) -- Derrick Johnese ran for a career-high 252 yards and two touchdowns -- including a 73-yarder -- as Northwestern State defeated Sam Houston State 45-27 on Saturday.

Northwestern (7-3, 3-1 Southland Conference) held Sam Houston (8-2, 3-1) to 309 total yards, nearly 200 yards under the Bearkats' 502-yard average.

Shelton Sampson added 104 yards rushing on 22 carries, including a 7-yard touchdown with 8:07 left before halftime.

Northwestern had 446 yards rushing and 514 total yards.

Sam Houston State quarterback Dustin Long, who came into the game with a 377-yard passing average, posted a season-low 220-yard passing total and did not have a TD pass for the first time this season.

Sam Houston came into the game converting just under 50 percent of third downs, but went just 1-for-11 on third down against Northwestern.

The Bearkats led 17-14 after the first quarter, helped by two turnovers by Northwestern.

Sampson put Northwestern ahead 21-20 on his 7-yard TD run at the 8:07 mark in the second quarter. His score capped a 14-play, 95-yard drive.

Lance Garner hit a 38-yard field goal for the Bearkats to cut the NSU's lead to 21-20.

Less than three minutes into the second half, Johnese broke loose on a sweep to the right and cut back across the field for a 73-yard touchdown to make it 28-20.

A 22-yard Tommy Hebert field goal with 2:10 to go in the third quarter gave Northwestern a 31-20 lead.

With 10:22 left in the game, Toby Zeigler broke a 71-yard punt return for a touchdown, lifting the Demons ahead 38-20.

The Bearkats answered with a 12-play 67-yard drive to stay in the game, scoring on a 9-yard Jarrod Fuller run with 6:26 left to make it 38-27.

Johnese's 9-yard TD with 38 seconds left to play made it 45-27.