Special Teams play gives Rangers a chance, lose heartbreaker on road

Alva / Athletics / Football
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Special Teams play gives Rangers a chance, lose heartbreaker on road

GOODWELL, Okla. (11-4-11) – The Northwestern Oklahoma State University football team closed the season with a heartbreaking loss on the road to Oklahoma Panhandle State, 41-35.

Panhandle State battled back from a 28-7 halftime lead by the Rangers, scoring 19 points in the third and 15 points and in the fourth quarter. The Aggies scored the winning touchdown with 13-seconds remaining on a five yard pass from Kevin Lauchland to Justin Paterson.

The Ranger loss was the first loss to the Aggies since the 1983 season. Northwestern finishes the season with 4-6 overall and 3-2 in the Central States Football League.

Northwestern jumped out to a quick 21-0 lead with seven minutes left in the first quarter, with the first touchdown coming on a Kyle Jech pass to Steven Majike from four yards out.

On the ensuing possession, the Rangers forced the Aggies to punt. Fortunately, a Ranger lineman was able to get a hand on the punt, allowing P.J. Stimson to pick it up and run it in for a touchdown to go up 14-0.

Again, it wouldn’t take long for the Rangers to tack on the third score of the game as an Aggie mental mistake proved costly.

The Rangers picked up their third score of the ball game midway through the first as Jermil Martin punched one in from the 2-yard line.

After the Aggies put their first score of the game on the board in the second, Northwestern’s Jared Jackson scored on an eight-yard run. Jackson led the Rangers with 108 yards on the ground in the contest.

Late in the third quarter, the Rangers added their final score of the afternoon as a blocked punt was picked up by Chris Campbell who finished the play off by walking into the endzone, giving the Rangers a 35-13 lead to that point.

However, as the Oklahoma Panhandle weather began to turn nasty during the second half, so did the momentum. The Aggies scored 28-unanswered points to put away the game.

The Aggie running game did everything they could to lead their team back on senior day in Goodwell, out rushing the Rangers 260-to-102 on 50 carries. Overall, OPSU outgained Northwestern 414-to-231.

Northwestern’s loss gives them their first losing season since 2006.