Scores

Final

Northwestern 27

(3-2, 1-1 Big Ten)

Purdue 21

(1-4, 0-1 Big Ten)

12:00 PM ET, October 3, 2009

Ross-Ade Stadium, WEST LAFAYETTE, IN

1 2 3 4 T
NW 3 13 3 827
PUR 14 7 0 021

Top Performers

Passing: J. Elliott (PUR) - 313 YDS, 3 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: A. Fields (NW) - 18 CAR, 43 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: A. Valentin (PUR) - 4 REC, 101 YDS, 2 TD

Northwestern thwarts last-second TD for victory

Associated Press

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Joey Elliott overthrew Aaron Valentin in the end zone on fourth-and-goal in the closing seconds, allowing Northwestern to hold on and beat Purdue 27-21 Saturday.

Purdue led 21-19 in the fourth quarter, but the Boilermakers committed their sixth turnover on a sack of Elliott with 6:28 to play.

Northwestern (3-2, 1-1 Big Ten) grabbed its only lead when Mike Kafka took a shotgun snap and ran for a 2-yard TD with 2:09 left. Kafka's two-point conversion pass to Drake Dunsmore gave the Wildcats a 27-21 lead.

Purdue (1-4, 0-1) drove from its 16-yard line but couldn't score despite getting a first-and-goal.

Purdue led 21-3 but committed five turnovers in a span of about 17 minutes to help the Wildcats get back into the game.

Elliott passed for 313 yards and three touchdowns. Kafka passed for 224 yards and ran for 39.

On the Wildcats' first play from scrimmage, Arby Fields was stripped by Ryan Kerrigan, and Purdue's Torri Williams recovered at the Northwestern 34. Elliott took advantage by completing a 5-yard touchdown pass to Keith Smith with just 2:32 gone.

Northwestern got only a field goal out of a 20-play drive, and Purdue quickly made the most of its goal-line stand. Elliott's second touchdown pass came on a 67-yard screen to Valentin. After Valentin caught the pass, he stiff-armed a defender on the sideline and jogged into the end zone to give Purdue a 14-3 lead.

Elliott connected with Valentin again early in the second quarter. This time Valentin made a 5-yard catch in the back of the end zone to give the Boilermakers a 21-3 lead.

Northwestern followed with another 20-play drive that took 9:32, and this time, the Wildcats got nothing. Jacob Schmidt was stopped on a fourth-and-goal from the 1.

Elliott made his first mistake by throwing an interception to Sherrick McManis, and Northwestern quickly turned it into points. Fields scored on a 5-yard run to make it 21-10.

Valentin fumbled the kickoff, and Northwestern recovered at the Purdue 23. Stefan Demos then kicked a field goal to cut the gap to 21-13.

Jaycen Taylor fumbled with 39 seconds left in the first half, and Northwestern recovered at the Purdue 24. Demos kicked another field goal to trim Purdue's lead to 21-16 at halftime.

Northwestern ran 88 plays to Purdue's 57.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
NW
PUR
1st Downs2316
Total Yards311375
Passing224313
Rushing8762
Penalties8-617-70
3rd Down Conversions10-216-10
4th Down Conversions2-30-1
Turnovers16
Possession35:5824:02

Passing Leaders

NorthwesternC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Kafka28/442245.100
PurdueC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Elliott20/2831311.231

Rushing Leaders

NorthwesternCARYDSAVGTDLG
Fields18432.418
Kafka18392.2112
PurdueCARYDSAVGTDLG
Bolden18532.9013
Taylor166.006

Receiving Leaders

NorthwesternRECYDSAVGTDLG
Markshausen10565.6015
Stewart45112.8022
PurdueRECYDSAVGTDLG
Smith710114.4123
Valentin410125.3267

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERNWPUR
TD12:28Keith Smith 5 Yd Pass From Joey Elliott (Carson Wiggs Kick) 07
FG04:34Stefan Demos 18 Yd 37
TD03:35Aaron Valentin 67 Yd Pass From Joey Elliott (Carson Wiggs Kick) 314
SECOND QUARTERNWPUR
TD11:52Aaron Valentin 5 Yd Pass From Joey Elliott (Carson Wiggs Kick) 321
TD01:31Arby Fields 5 Yd Run (Stefan Demos Kick) 1021
FG00:52Stefan Demos 35 Yd 1321
FG00:09Stefan Demos 25 Yd 1621
THIRD QUARTERNWPUR
FG07:32Stefan Demos 39 Yd 1921
FOURTH QUARTERNWPUR
TD02:09Mike Kafka 2 Yd Run (Mike Kafka Pass To Drake Dunsmore For Two-Point Conversion) 2721