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Fast Start Lifts St. Norbert Past Knox

From Sports Information Director, September 17, 2016 | Football
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

GALESBURG, Ill. - St. Norbert College scored five touchdowns in the first 12 minutes of the game to lift the Green Knights to a 50-3 win over Knox College in a Midwest Conference game at Knosher Bowl.

The Green Knights (1-2, 1-0 MWC) took advantage of two turnovers and two more turnovers on downs to jump out to a 35-0 lead just 11 minutes 45 seconds into the game.

St. Norbert needed four plays after receiving the opening kickoff to score on a 23-yard touchdown run by J.T. Crosby just 89 seconds into the game. Knox then went for it on fourth-and-6 from its won 18-yard line and failed, with Crosby cashing in two plays later on a five-yard run and a 14-0 lead.

Knox advanced to the St. Norbert 44-yard line on its next possession and came up a yard short on a fourth-and-3 scenario to give the ball back to the Green Knights. Five consecutive Elijah Fort runs set up a 36-yard touchdown run by Crosby for a 21-0 lead with 6:11 left in the period.

Knox quarterback Matt McCaffrey was intercepted by Tyler Jensen on the Prairie Fire's next play from scrimmage. Four plays later Crosby found Zach Reeves for a 29-yard touchdown pass and a 28-0 edge with 4:38 left in the quarter.

The Prairie Fire then fumbled the ensuing kickoff, with Samuel Staehling's fumbler recovery at the Knox 20 setting St. Norbert up in business again. Four plays later Brad Boockmeier plunged in from nine yards out and a 35-0 edge with 3:15 left in the first period.

Knox would score the second quarter's only points on a 29-yard field goal by Wes Koerber wth 8:52 left in the period. St. Norbert would take a 35-3 lead into intermission.

St. Norbert's Matt Barrett recovered a Knox fumble at the Prairie Fire 8-yard line to set up the Green Knights lone touchdown of the second half. Fort scored from eight yards out for a 42-3 lead with 12:58 left in the period. Nick Demma then sacked Kobe Shutter for a safety with 5:15 left in the quarter for a 44-3 lead.

Spenser Thompson-Meyers kicked field goals of 34 and 31 yards in the fourth quarter for the game's final points.

St. Norbert outgained Knox 405-156 in total offense, with 358 yards of the Green Knights' total coming on the ground - the 14th-best rushing total in a game in school history. Crosby posted 130 yards on 16 carries for three touchdowns, while Fort had 118 yards rushing on 22 carries and one touchdown. Crosby completed 4 of 12 passes for 45 yards and one touchdown.

Nick Edlund led Knox with 50 rushing yards on 19 carries. McCaffrey completed 16 of 30 passes for 76 yards and two interceptions.

Barrett led the St. Norbert defense with nine tackles and a fumble recovery, while Jensen finished with two interceptions.