MARQUETTE, Mich. – Northern Michigan University Football closes the 2018 season Saturday by visiting Ashland University in the final Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference matchup of the season.
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| LAST TIME OUT
NMU scored a go-ahead touchdown with 1:28 to go to take a 27-24 lead at Wayne State University Saturday. Wayne State took the next drive down to the NMU 10-yard line, but the Wildcat defense picked off the WSU quarterback and took it 97 yards to seal the victory with a touchdown, winning the game 34-24. The win was the first road victory of the Kyle Nystrom era.
| MAKING HISTORY
The Wildcats' running offense has posted one of the best season's in school history,as they broke the school record for rushing yards in a season Saturday. NMU is averaging 256.1 yards rushing per game this year and have tallied 2,561 yards on the ground, beating the old record of 2,510 rushing yards. The team still has one more game this season to improve on their own record.
| ANOTHER RECORD FOR MAYON
Senior Jake Mayon (Plainfield, Ill./Plainfield East) has rushed for 1,411 yards this season and is now just 59 yards from breaking the single-season rushing mark for NMU. The current record of 1,469 yards is held by Nelson Edmonds, who set the record in the 1991 season. Earlier this year, Mayon became NMU's All-Time leading rusher as he passed NMU Hall of Famer Steve Avery's mark of 3,842 yards. Mayon has amassed 4,126 yards in his career, averaging 103.2 yards per game. He has also scored 37 touchdowns as a Wildcat, with 13 scored this season.
| CLOSE GAMES
Northern Michigan has lost four games this season by a combined 12 points. In the opener, the Wildcats fell to McKendree 34-28. Later in the season, they fell to Davenport University 31-30 in overtime. The next weekend, they fell to Northwood 27-24. Last weekend against rival Michigan Technological University, NMU fell by just two points, 35-33.
| DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Freshman Anthony Ladd (Columbus, Ohio/Grand Rapids Christian) was named the GLIAC Defensive Player of the Week after sealing a victory at Wayne State University with a 97-yard interception return for a touchdown in addition to six tackles. Ladd became the first NMU player to earn GLIAC Defensive Player of the Week since the 2011 season.
| RUNNING WILD
The Wildcats are currently 16th in the country with 256.1 rushing yards per game this year, and are second in the GLIAC behind the nation's #2 team, Ferris State University. The 28 rushing touchdowns NMU has scored are 15th in Division II and also second in the GLIAC.
| GETTING FIRST DOWNS
The team has tallied 139 rushing first downs this year and are tied with FSU for the most in the conference and sixth nationally. NMU is second in the conference with 22 first downs per game. Their 220 total first downs put them 26th in all of Division II play.
| NMU VERSUS ASHLAND
NMU enters Saturday's contest looking for their first victory over Ashland since a 23-19 victory over the Eagles in 2010. Ashland holds a 19-6 allt-time series advantage. Ashland comes into the game at 5-4 on the season, but 5-2 in the GLIAC, and allowing just 100.7 rushing yards per game.