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Ferris State Advances To D2 National Quarterfinals For Fourth Consecutive Year With Big Win

Scoring Highlights Video
FSU Postgame Press Conference Video
UCM Postgame Press Conference Video
Postgame Highlights Video

Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University Bulldogs advanced to the NCAA Division II National Quarterfinals for the fourth consecutive year as FSU opened postseason action with a dominating 37-10 win over Central Missouri on Saturday (Nov. 30) at FSU's Top Taggart Field.

Ferris State rolled up 525 yards of total offense and ran for 372 yards on the ground in winning its 11th game of the year. It marks the sixth consecutive year in which FSU has won 11 games or more, which is the longest streak in D2 Football.

The Bulldogs took an early 6-0 lead as senior slot Davontage Harrington capped off a game-opening 72-yard Bulldog jaunt with a two-yard scoring run only three minutes into the game.

The lead didn't last long, though, as the Mules answered in the first-ever series' matchup between the two programs. UCM drove 70 yards in 10 plays on its first drive to grab a 7-6 lead on Koby Wilkerson's 14-yard scoring run midway thru the initial frame.

The score stood until the final seven minutes of the opening half when FSU surged ahead with 6:36 to go in the second frame on senior quarterback Travis Russell's 58-yard scoring throw to redshirt freshman receiver CJ Jefferson, who came on in relief of injured wideout Sy Barnett. The scoring connected finished off a five-play, 73-yard march.

FSU increased the edge to 16-7 at the break when senior kicker Jackson Dieterle converted a 38-yard field goal with only two seconds left in the half.

In the third quarter, the Bulldogs took control behind a strong rushing attack. After the Mules pulled back within 16-10 with a 26-yard field goal from Samuel Knowloton to begin the final half, the Bulldogs answered with three consecutive touchdown runs from junior back Marvin Campbell.

Campbell's first scoring run came on a 22-yard carry with 11:04 left in the third to finish an eight-play, 80-yard FSU drive, making it a 23-10 contest. Later, with 1:17 remaining in the period, Campbell found paydirt from a yard-away to give the Bulldogs a 30-10 lead entering the fourth. The drive began at the FSU one-yard line and covered 99 yards in 19 plays, taking nearly eight minutes off the clock.

The Bulldogs later added another five-yard TD run from Campbell with only 5:50 left in the contest. The final scoring drive took 13 plays and went for 90 yards, chewing up another seven minutes.

Overall, the Bulldogs got a game-high 151 yards rushing from Campbell on 19 carries with Tyler Minor adding 82 rushing yards on 12 tries. Russell completed 12-of-25 throws for 153 yards and a score. Senior slot Dion Earls had four catches for 29 yards while Jefferson made three grabs for 73 yards.

The Bulldog defense also had a strong day as they intercepted Central Missouri quarterback Brook Bolles four times and sacked him twice. Senior cornerback Alex Thomas thwarted two of the Mules' drives with interceptions in the game.

FSU senior safety Najeem Hosein had a team-high 11 tackles with an interception while senior linebacker Avonte Bell had eight stops overall and linebacker Liam Daly notched seven for FSU.

Bolles completed 19-of-37 passes for Central Missouri for 253 yards. Drew Slager made eight catches for 125 total yards.

The Bulldogs will host Northwest Missouri State in the national quarterfinals on Saturday, Dec. 7, with kickoff set for 1 p.m. (ET) at Top Taggart Field. Stay tuned to for additional ticket and game information coming soon.