By NEMCC Media Relations
Moorhead – Tiger defensive lineman Chris Wolfe and defensive back Nick Johnson both scored defensive touchdowns for Northeast in the second half to secure the victory for head coach Ricky Smither against Mississippi Delta Community College Thursday night in the season finale.
Wolfe scored on a fumble recovery in the end zone after DT Lavon Hooks forced the fumble to give Northeast a 17-3 lead with 3:27 left to play in the game.
Johnson scored — on one of the most spectacular plays of the year — by picking off a Delta pass and scampering 70 yards down the sideline for the score with only 46 seconds left to play in the final quarter of the season, capping the Tigers 24-3 victory.
“It was a great night tonight,” Johnson said. “We showed up ready to play and it showed . . . I mean on that play where I got the interception I was in the right place at the right time and was able to outrun everyone down the sideline for the score and we ended the season on a high note.”
Placekicker Chris Cooper put the Tigers on the board first in the opening half on a 34 yard field goal to put Northeast up 3-0 at the break. Northeast got on the scoreboard again at the 6:17 mark in the third quarter on a 67-yard touchdown pass from QB Nolan Genovese to WR Shuntez Smith to increase the Tiger lead to 10-0 after the PAT by Cooper.
Delta added a field goal late in the third quarter to answer the Smith score, but it was too little too late, as the Tigers cruised on to victory lane – thanks in part to Wolfe and Johnson’s late game heroics.
Northeast’s offensive top performers on the night were Genovese , who completed 15-of-30 for 200 yards, one TD and one interception, and wide-out Smith had 90 yards and a TD on five catches.
Defensively for Northeast, defensive tackle Lavon Hooks accounted for 12 total stops; three sack’s, five tackles for a loss, and a forced fumble, along with safety Brian Walker, who added 10 total tackles. Linebacker Dennis Draper had six stops, four tackles for a loss, and two pass break ups on the night, along with fellow LB Nick Thomason, who finished with seven tackles for the evening.
With the season finale victory, Smither’s squad moved to 3-6 overall and 2-4 in the north division while Delta fell to 1-8 overall and 1-5 respectively to finish the 2012 season.