Scores

Final

Northern Iowa 23

(5-0, 1-0 MVFC)

Illinois State 13

(2-3, 0-1 MVFC)

2:30 PM ET, September 29, 2007

Hancock Stadium, Normal, IL

1 2 3 4 T
UNI 0 13 0 1023
ILST 7 0 6 013

Top Performers

Passing: E. Sanders (UNI) - 166 YDS, 2 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: G. Blow (ILST) - 31 CAR, 167 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: V. Williams (UNI) - 4 REC, 46 YDS, 1 TD

N. Iowa 23, Illinois St. 13

Associated Press

NORMAL, Ill. (AP) -- Northern Iowa's Eric Sanders hit wide receiver Terrell Allen for a short touchdown pass to secure a late-game 23-13 victory over the Illinois State Redbirds on Saturday in the Gateway Football Conference opener for both teams.

Northern Iowa's victory gave them a 5-0 record for the first time since 1992.

The Redbirds (2-3, 0-1 Gateway Football Conference) scored first when quarterback Luke Drone connected with tailback Geno Blow, who went 50 yards for a touchdown. Blow led the game in rushing with 167 yards on 31 carries.

The Panthers (5-0, 1-0 Gateway) took a 13-7 lead with just 47 seconds left in the first half when Sanders found wide receiver Victor Williams for a 6-yard touchdown pass.

Illinois State tied things up with 4:38 left in the third quarter when Drone hit Jake Rourke on the 10 yard line, and the wide receiver ran it in for a touchdown. Redbirds kicker Tyler Funk missed the extra point, and so the score remained 13-13.

That left the door open for Sanders and Allen, who took the 5-yard pass into the end zone with 5:24 left in the game. Panthers kicker Billy Hallgren added a 43-yard field goal with 2:48 left to put the game out of reach.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
UNI
ILST
1st Downs2213
Total Yards369259
Passing166108
Rushing203151
Penalties4-343-22
3rd Down Conversions0-00-0
4th Down Conversions0-00-0
Turnovers34
Possession32:1727:43

Passing Leaders

Northern IowaC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Sanders16/261666.421
Illinois StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Drone12/231084.713

Rushing Leaders

Northern IowaCARYDSAVGTDLG
Lewis191236.500
Williams14423.000
Illinois StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Blow311675.410
Rice1-7-7.000

Receiving Leaders

Northern IowaRECYDSAVGTDLG
Gray66711.200
Williams44611.510
Illinois StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Rourke34113.710
Mickle23316.500

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERUNIILST
TD02:13Geno Blow 50 Yd Run (Tyler Funk Kick) 07
SECOND QUARTERUNIILST
FG09:02Billy Hallgren 19 Yd 37
FG06:52Billy Hallgren 25 Yd 67
TD00:47Victor Williams 6 Yd Pass From Eric Sanders (Billy Hallgren Kick) 137
THIRD QUARTERUNIILST
TD04:38Jake Rourke 27 Yd Pass From Luke Drone (Pat Failed) 1313
FOURTH QUARTERUNIILST
TD05:17Terrell Allen 5 Yd Pass From Eric Sanders (Billy Hallgren Kick) 2013
FG02:48Billy Hallgren 43 Yd 2313