Spartans Fall Short In 48-41 OT Shootout

Oct. 6, 2007

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EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) - C.J. Bacher threw for a career-high 520 yards and five touchdowns, including the game-winner in overtime, and Northwestern scored a wild 48-41 victory over Michigan State on Saturday.

Bacher connected with Omar Conteh on a 12-yard TD strike in overtime, and Northwestern (3-3, 1-2 Big Ten) forced Michigan State's Brian Hoyer into four straight incompletions when the Spartans had the chance to send it to a second overtime.

Bacher completed 38 of 48 passes as the Wildcats' spread offense baffled the Spartans (4-2, 0-2), who have lost two straight.

Javon Ringer rushed 12 times for 185 yards and three touchdowns, including scoring runs of 47 and 80 yards earlier in the second half, to lead Michigan State.

Northwestern missed two opportunities to win the game late in regulation.

Amado Villarreal's 36-yard field goal attempt as time expired sailed wide left. About three minutes earlier, the Wildcats botched the snap on a field goal attempt, resulting in an incomplete pass.

But Northwestern was able to rebound in overtime and avenge a bitter loss from last season, when Michigan State rallied from 35 points down to beat Northwestern 41-38, the biggest comeback in the history of the NCAA's Football Bowl Subdivision.

Northwestern has won six of the last 10 meetings, but the Spartans hold a 32-16 edge in the overall series.

Northwestern running back Tyrell Sutton missed his fourth straight game with an ankle injury, depriving the Wildcats of one of their top offensive threats.