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Second Quarter Dooms Green Knights at Aurora

From Asst. AD/Athletics Communications, September 7, 2019 | Football
by Dan Lukes,, (920) 403-4077

MONTGOMERY, Ill. - St. Norbert College saw a first-quarter lead disappear thanks to a 29-point second quarter by Aurora University, and the Green Knights couldn't recover in a 50-40 non-conference loss at Spartan Stadium.

St. Norbert took the lead on the second play from scrimmage when Freddy Poorman connected with Samuel Staehling on a 74-yard touchdown pass. The Green Knights led 6-0 just 39 seconds into the game after the point-after try failed. Aurora answered with a 5-yard touchdown from Gavin Zimbelman to Colton Jewell just 1:36 later for a 7-6 lead.

The Green Knights went on a seven-play, 64-yard drive capped by a 4-yard run by Poorman with 9:53 left in the first quarter, but Aurora would take the lead for good at the 3:52 mark on a 92-yard pass from Zimbelman to Jacolby Maxwell.

Zimbelman then threw four touchdown passes in the second quarter, two each sandwiched around a 7-yard touchdown pass from Poorman to Staehling. The St. Norbert touchdown brought St. Norbert to within 29-19 with 5:34 left in the second quarter, but the Spartans scored twice in the last 2:20 of the half to take a 43-19 lead into halftime.

Zimbelman found Maxwell for a 31-yard touchdown pass 3:14 into the third quarter for a 50-19 Aurora lead. St. Norbert closed out the game with three touchdowns - on a 2-yard run by Nate Ihlenfeldt late in the third quarter, a 34-yard touchdown pass from Poorman to Matt Galanopoulos and a 12-yard strike from Poorman to Staehling.

St. Norbert set a school record with 60 pass attempts and matched a school record with 100 plays, also accomplishing it on Oct. 28, 1989 against Beloit College. The Spartans outgained the Green Knights 604-528 in total offense.

Poorman, who set an individual school record with 57 pass attempts, completed 32 to finished with 384 yards passing and four touchdowns. Staehling hauled in a career-high 10 receptions for 203 yards - his second 200-yard career receiving game - with three touchdowns. His three touchdown receptions give him 34 for his career, three shy of matching Mike Whitehouse's school record. Nate Ihlenfeldt led the Green Knights on the ground with 112 yards on 16 carries.

Zimbelman completed 33 of 52 passes for 497 yards and seven touchdowns to lead Aurora. Jacolby Maxwell caught five passes for 175 yards and two scores.

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