By Tim Glon
BEREA — The Ohio Northern football team celebrated Senior Day with an impressive 42-25 victory over Baldwin Wallace on a cold Saturday afternoon at Dial-Roberson Stadium.
The Polar Bears (7-3 overall, 6-3) finish in a three-way tie for second in the Ohio Athletic Conference with a 6-3 record and clinches an upper division finish in the league for the 21st time in the past 22 seasons.
Baldwin Wallace ends its season 6-4, 5-4.
Sophomore Christiaan Williams (Sidney/Anna) led a strong Ohio Northern ground attack with 179 yards and four touchdowns on 30 carries.
Sophomore Anthony McFadden (Chillicothe/Paint Valley) completed 9-of-17 passes for 115 yards and a score and ran 13 times for 110 yards and a touchdown in his second career start at quarterback.
Junior Chad Rex (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch) caught six passes for 94 yards and a touchdown.
BW was led by Jake Hudson with 101 yards rushing on 13 attempts and 125 yards passing on a 13-for-19 effort.
Northern jumped to a 14-3 second quarter lead on touchdown runs of 1 and 36 yards by Williams sandwiched around a 20-yard Yellow Jacket field goal.
Northern led 14-10 at halftime and added to that lead with a 7-yard TD run by McFadden with 37 seconds left in the third quarter.
The two teams combined for 36 points in a wild fourth quarter.
Baldwin Wallace pulled within 21-17 on the second play of the fourth quarter on a 5-yard run by Matt Lowry.
The Polar Bears answered with an 8-yard TD run by Williams to go back up 28-17 with 10:17 left.
Two plays after a Yellow Jackets fumble, Rex took a short pass from McFadden, got a nifty block from senior Malachi Nolletti (Jeromesville/Northwestern) and raced 54 yards up the sideline to make it 35-17 with 9:15 left in the game.
Baldwin Wallace answered immediately with a 7-play, 65-yard scoring drive. Lowry scored from three yards out and Austin Smith ran for the 2-point conversion and it was 35-25 with 7:18 left.
But the Polar Bears slammed the door, marching 41 yards in eight plays and taking 4:47 off the clock. Williams plowed over from 1 yard out and it was 42-25 with 2:31 remaining.
"This was a great win for our seniors," ONU head coach Dean Paul said. "We knew that Baldwin Wallace was an outstanding team and thought they would score some points. Christiaan had another big day for us and McFadden did some nice things at quarterback. It was just a good, all-around victory over a quality OAC opponent."
BW out-gained ONU 517-425 in total offense despite the Polar Bears holding a 310-224 advantage on the ground.