BEAUMONT, Texas — Northwestern State used a 20-point second quarter, scoring three touchdowns in the final 10 minutes before halftime to spark a 37-17 win over Lamar in Southland Conference football action at Provost Umphrey Stadium on Saturday.
The Demons (3-3, 2-1) scored three touchdowns in the final 10 minutes before halftime for a 27-7 halftime advantage.
Northwestern State quarterback Brad Henderson threw for 290 yards and three touchdowns while going 26 of 34 with no interceptions.
The start of the game was delayed for 90 minutes because of a power outage, and the teams combined for 120 yards in the first quarter, including 71 by the Demons.
But Northwestern State surged to a commanding lead and held off a second-half comeback bid by the Cardinals (3-2, 1-1), clinching the outcome on a 54-yard screen pass and run by tailback D.J. Palmer into a blitzing Lamar defense on third-and-10 with 3:20 remaining.
Sidney Riley had two of the Demons’ four first-half TDs, on runs of 1 and 5 yards bookending two Henderson scoring passes of 5 yards to Trevor Goodie and 19 to Phillip Harvey. Northwestern State got its last two scores in the final four minutes of the opening half.
Goodie’s score, on an inside flanker screen, put the Demons up to stay. Harvey’s touchdown was a backbreaker for the Cardinals, 3:49 before halftime.
The Demons got first-and-goal at the 2 on a pass interference penalty, but an offensive pass interference call shoved the Demons to second-and goal at the 19. An incompletion made it third down, when Henderson found Harvey with his back to the goalline between three defenders at the 10. He bounced off the tacklers, spun around and sprinted toward the end zone for the score.
After a punt, the Demons extended the margin to 20 points on Riley’s inside counter from the 5.
But Lamar got a 26-yard field goal on its first series after halftime to draw within 27-10, and the Demons cost themselves points when Jamaal White was flagged for a personal foul that wiped out an 89-yard interception return by Cashas Pollard which would have made it 34-10 midway through the third period.
John Shaughnessy banged through a 45-yard field goal into a stiff wind with 5:33 left to play, but Lamar bounced right back on a 40-yard TD from Andre Bevil to J.J. Hayes 68 seconds later to stay in range with 4:25 showing.
The Palmer screen pass touchdown down the Lamar sideline locked up the outcome.
The Cardinals outgained the Demons 460-443, with Bevil showing great escapability in a 360-yard passing output. But he was intercepted three times, with Cortez Paige and Lamont Simmons joining Pollard in the interception paraded by the Demons
“In today’s football, it’s all about the points allowed, not in the yards you give up,” said Demons’ head coach Bradley Dale Peveto. “We made it tough on them and didn’t give up a lot while we were getting control of the score.”