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Late Score Lifts Winona State Over Wayne State

Posted: 19 October, 2013

WINONA, MN - Winona State scored a touchdown with 54 seconds left in the game – after the Wildcats had taken the lead 13 seconds earlier – to hand Wayne State a heart-breaking 45-41 Northern Sun Conference football loss Saturday afternoon at Verizon Wireless Stadium in Winona, Minnesota.   The host Warriors improve to 5-2 overall and 3-0 in the NSIC South while Wayne State drops to 2-5 and 1-2 in the NSIC South Division .
Winona State opened the scoring with 4:25 to go in the first quarter on a safety when the Warriors blocked a Sean McClure punt at the WSC 19 that went through the end zone for a safety.  The Warriors scored again on the next drive to take a 9-0 lead, but Wayne State scored with four seconds left in the opening quarter on a 47-yard field goal by redshirt freshman Tyler Basch to make the score 9-3.
Following a WSC fumble, Winona State took a 16-3 lead with 8:54 to play in the second quarter for a 16-3 Warrior lead.  But Wayne State scored on their next two possessions and grabbed a 17-16 lead late in the second quarter.  The first Wildcat score was on a 62-yard pass from Zach Osborn to Adam Stark at the 7:43 mark and the second score came with 1:04 to go before halftime on a 27-yard scoring run by Charlie Davidson to cap a 10 play, 88 yard drive. 
But Winona State scored moments later to regain the lead right before halftime, thanks to a 64-yard pass that put the ball on the Wildcat one yard line, and took a 24-17 lead with 27 seconds to go in the half.
The third quarter saw a combined five possessions by the two teams with five scores.  WSC opened the half with a 39 yard field goal from Tyler Basch making the score 24-20 with 10:32 to play in the third quarter.  Following a Winona State touchdown, Wayne State answered with a score of their own thanks to a 17-yard leaping reception in the back part of the end zone by junior wide receiver Adam Stark, his second touchdown grab of the day, trimming the Winona State lead to 31-26 with 2:51 remaining in the third quarter. 
Winona State scored again with 1:00 to play in the quarter for a 38-26 advantage, but Wayne State wasted little time with a response as Davidson broke loose for a 57-yard scoring jaunt with nine seconds to play in the third quarter making the score 38-33 after three quarters.
After an offensive-minded third quarter, defense took over in the fourth quarter until the final two minutes of the game. 
With 3:44 left to play, WSC took over from their own 44 and marched down the field as the Wildcats used a 20-yard scoring pass from Osborn to senior tight end Grant Otten with just 1:07 left in the game to take a 39-38 lead.  A two point pass from Osborn to Stark gave WSC a 41-38 advantage.
Winona State responded quickly as quarterback Jack Nelson found running back Chichi Ojika on a 65-yard pass play on the next offensive play and the Warriors regained the lead 45-41 with 54 seconds left.
Wayne State had one last chance as the ‘Cats took over from their own 31 yard line with 48 seconds to play.  WSC moved the ball to the WSU 44 where Adam Stark was hit following a 10 yard catch and fumbled, recovered by the Warriors to seal the dramatic 45-41 win over the Wildcats.
Wayne State out-gained Winona State in the contest 520-448 with the Wildcats gaining 202 yards on the ground and 318 passing.  Winona State had 101 rushing and 347 passing.  WSC also had the edge in time of possession, 34:33 to 25:27 over the Warriors. 
Individually for Wayne State, senior running back Charlie Davidson ran for 189 yards on 24 carries and two scores.  It was his fifth 100-yard game of the season.  Redshirt freshman quarterback Zach Osborn completed 24 of 51 passes for 318 yards with three TD’s and one interception.  Junior wide receiver Adam Stark was the top Wildcat receiver with nine catches for 162 yards and two scores (62 and 17 yards).  Cole McDaniel, Tonev Abraham, Cody Calhoun and Charlie Davidson each added three receptions.
Senior strong safety Austan Pomajzl led Wayne State’s defense with 13 tackles and one fumble recovery while junior linebacker Nick Monzu added seven stops.  Chase Samuel added an interception for the WSC defense.
Wayne State will be at home next weekend hosting Concordia-St. Paul in a 1 p.m. NSIC South Division contest at Bob Cunningham Field in Wayne.

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