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NCAA Game Summary - Rice at Northwestern

(Saturday, November 12th)

Final Score: Northwestern 28, Rice 6

Evanston, IL (Sports Network) - Quarterback Dan Persa threw for a career-high 372 yards and four touchdowns, as Northwestern blew out the Rice Owls in non- conference action at Ryan Field this afternoon, 28-6.

Northwestern (5-5), which pulled off a huge upset on the road at nationally- ranked Nebraska last weekend (28-25), got back to .500 on the season, rolling up 533 yards of total offense, including 397 yards through the air. Persa completed 25-of-32 passes in the game and his four TD passes matched his career-best. He wasn't the only Wildcat to have a career performance though, as Jeremy Ebert hauled in seven passes, for a career-high 208 yards and two TDs. It tied for the third-best single-game production in school history.

Rice (3-7) struggled on both sides of the football, finishing with a mere 254 yards of offense, while getting torched by Persa and the Wildcats. Tyler Smith was the lone bright spot offensively for the Owls, rushing for 84 yards and the team's only score, while also grabbing a team-high four passes, for 21 yards in the loss. Quarterback Nick Fanuzzi had a rough outing, completing just 13-of-25 passes, for a meager 92 yards with one interception.

Ebert got the Wildcats on the scoreboard first with an electrifying 90-yard TD reception from Persa late in the first quarter. It was the second-longest completion in school history. Persa and Ebert were at it again in the second quarter, capping off a six-play, 80-yard drive with a 17-yard TD strike.

Demetrius Fields got into the act four minutes later, as Northwestern closed out the scoring in the first half with a 15-yard TD pass from Persa, giving the Wildcats a 21-0 lead at intermission.

Northwestern increased its lead to 28-0 early in the fourth quarter, when Persa found Kain Colter from three yards out four his fourth TD pass of the afternoon.

The Owls avoided the shutout late, as Smith scored on a nine-yard run at the 4:16 mark of the fourth quarter. However, the PAT failed, resulting in Northwestern's 28-6 victory.

The Wildcats had dropped five straight games at one point this season, but are peaking late in the year, with this marking the team's third straight victory.

11/12 16:01:14 ET

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