Cardinals get past Eagles, prepare for Warriors
North Central College held off Robert Morris University-Chicago for its 35-21 season-opening win Saturday, Sept. 3, in Arlington Heights.
The Cardinals, ranked number 13 in the preseason National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) poll, took advantage of five Eagle turnovers to overcome being outgained by the home team. NCC takes its 1-0 record into its home opener Saturday, Sept. 10, against Webber International University.
According to NorthCentralCardinals.com, one of those turnovers came with about three minutes left, with Robert Morris trailing 28-21 and attempting a game-tying scoring drive. But NCC's Pat Cravens intercepted a third-down pass and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown.
Robert Morris had a 457-398 advantage in yardage. The Cardinals' Broc Rutter was 16-to-26 passing for 288 yards and four touchdowns. Austin Breunig had 92 yards on 22 carries and caught a 38-yard touchdown pass.
On defense, Cravens also had 13 tackles and Jeremy Niklos had two interceptions and seven tackles.
Saturday's contest will be the season opener for Webber International. According to WebberAthletics.com, the Warriors' first game, which was scheduled for Sept. 3, was canceled because of Hurricane Hermine being in the travel path of their opponent, College of Faith.
The Warriors received votes in the NAIA poll.
Saturday's game, played at Benedetti-Wehrli Stadium, resulted in a 38-21 win for North Central.