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NAU Wins A Thriller In Idaho, 38-31

The NAU Lumberjacks football team got a big road win Saturday with a 38-31 win over the Idaho Vandals. The game went back and forth in the first half, until Idaho’s Charles Akanno returned an R.J. Martinez fumble for a touchdown. Luis Aguilar kicked a field goal as Idaho led NAU 21-17 at halftime. Early in the third quarter, NAU ran a fake punt with a direct snap to Harrison Beemiller who took it 50 yards for a touchdown and NAU took the lead 24-21. About four minutes later, Martinez connected with Coleman Owen on a 29-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 31-21. Idaho then scored ten unanswered points to tie the game at 31 with just over three minutes to play. Then NAU went on a four play, 75 yard drive with Kevin Daniels rushing for 53 of the 75 yards, for the game-winning touchdown by Martinez to make the score 38-31. Idaho had one final shot to tie the game, after punter DJ Arnson was called down on a punt attempt, however NAU safety Morgan Vest picked off Mike Beaudry at the five-yard line with 1:04 to play and the Lumberjacks get out of Idaho with a 38-31 win. NAU had 470 yards of total offense, with Daniels rushing for 181 yards on 27 carries in the win. Martinez had another solid game. The true freshman was 18-of-29 for 238 yards and three touchdowns, along with another touchdown rushing. Coleman Owen had seven catches for 139 yards and a touchdown for the Jacks, who improve to 4-4 overall and 2-2 in the Big Sky. The Jacks return home for two game, the first coming next Saturday against ninth-ranked UC-Davis. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. in the Skydome.

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