Story and photo courtesy of Findlay Athletics
The University of Findlay football team began their season with a 45-10 thrashing of Northern Michigan University on Thursday, Aug. 30 at Donnell Stadium. The Oilers used a big, 21-point third quarter to blow the game open as they won their ninth opener in the past 11 years.
The Oilers jumped out to a 10-0 lead in the first quarter on the strength of a 5-yard touchdown run by senior running back Monterae Williams and a 20-yard field goal by junior Seth White.
After a touchdown run by the Wildcats, Williams once again found the end zone on a 10-yard scamper as the Oilers took a 17-7 lead into the break.
The Oilers began the second half with a bang as senior quarterback Clay Belton rushed in for a touchdown on the opening drive, which was set up by a 53-yard throwing strike to White. After an interception by junior defensive back Jamon McClain, Belton hit junior tight end Jaryd Brown for a 40-yard touchdown pass to make the score 31-7 with 10:02 to play in the period.
Findlay's defense forced a three and out on the ensuing possession and the Oilers once again had a big play through the air as Belton hit sophomore wide receiver Nathan Morris for a 46-yard touchdown pass to give the Oilers a 38-7 lead with 7:30 showing on the clock.
Red-shirt freshman Daiquone Ford would then cap the scoring for the Oilers in the fourth quarter as he crossed the goal line from seven yards out with 10:42 to play.
The Oilers racked up 522 yards of total offense in the win and averaged 7.2 yards per play. They threw for 309 yards in the game and rushed for 213 while converting 9-of-14 third down plays.
Belton finished the game by going 12-of-21 for 288 yards and two scores while Williams churned out 87 yards and two touchdowns on the ground, carrying the ball 23 times.
With 87 yards rushing, Williams moved into third place all-time at UF in career rushing yards and now has 3,399 for his career.
White caught four passes for 85 yards, Brown hauled in four receptions for 73 yards and a score while Morris made three catches for 77 yards and a touchdown.
Sophomore wide receiver Lloyd Henry added two receptions for 63 yards while Ford totaled 71 yards on 11 carries to go along with a touchdown on the ground.
Defensively, senior linebacker Brandon Butler led the team with eight tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.
Sophomore defensive back Tyler Ward made six stops while McClain contributed six tackles, an interception and two defensed passes.
The Oilers will be back in action again on Sep. 15 when they face Saginaw Valley State University at 7 p.m. in University Center, Mich.