Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Northwestern vs. Minnesota: Wildcats hold on to beat Gophers 21-13

The Northwestern Wildcats held on late to defeat the Minnesota Golden Gophers 21-13. Wildcats running back Venric Mark ran for a career-high 182 yards.

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9 Total Updates since October 9, 2012
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Venric Mark carries load in Northwestern win

The Northwestern running back came through with a big performance against the Gophers.

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Northwestern beats Minnesota 21-13

The Northwestern Wildcats moved to 6-1 after defeating the Minnesota Golden Gophers 21-13 in Big Ten play.

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Wildcats take 8-point lead into 4th quarter

The Northwestern Wildcats cling to 21-13 lead over the Minnesota Golden Gophers after three quarters of play.

Northwestern's normally explosive offense ground to a halt in the third quarter, gaining just 37 yards of offense. Running back Venric Mark, who had 151 yards rushing in the first half, rushed for just 10 in the quarter.

Minnesota was the only team to score in the third, getting on the board on a 38-yard field goal by Jordan Wettstein. The field goal capped off a nine-play, 30-yard drive for the Gophers that spanned 4:27.

Minnesota suffered an injury scare late in the third when quarterback MarQueis Gray went down with an apparent foot issue. Gray has done a lot of damage on the ground against the Northwestern defense, rushing for 86 yards and one score on eight carries. It's unclear what his status is for the rest of the game.

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Wildcats RB Mark powers NW to halftime lead

Northwestern Wildcats running back Venric Mark has carried the Wildcats to a 21-10 halftime lead over the Minnesota Golden Gophers.

Mark finished the half with 151 yards on 11 carries and two scores. With those 151 first half yards, he has already set a career high in rushing yards in a game.

Minnesota cut into a 14-3 deficit early in the second quarter after quarterback MarQueis Gray's 25-yard score. But Northwestern answered right back, with Mark's 48-yard touchdown run extending the Wildcats' lead to 21-10.

Besides Mark, there has not been much else going on for the Northwestern offense. Quarterback Kain Colter was 4-of-4 passing for 32 yards in the half while also adding 13 yards rushing. Backup quarterback Trevor Siemian was just 1-of-4 passing for four yards.

Thanks to the big rushing plays, Northwestern has almost has many yards of offense as Minnesota despite having the ball half as long. The Wildcats have racked up 198 total yards, while the Gophers have gained 210.

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Wildcats jump on Golden Gophers early

An early gaffe by the Minnesota Golden Gophers helped propel the Northwestern Wildcats to a 14-3 lead after the first quarter at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.

Northwestern recovered a Minnesota fumble on the opening kickoff, giving them the ball deep in Gopher territory. The Wildcats immediately cashed in, scoring on a 26-yard run by running back Venric Mark just 11 seconds into the game.

After the Gophers responded with a 12-play, 76-yard drive that resulted in a field goal, the Wildcats struck back with a 75-yard touchdown drive. Mark had a 47-yard scamper on the drive, and quarterback Kain Colter capped it off with a 2-yard touchdown run to put the Wildcats up 14-3.

Mark finished the first quarter with 77 yards on five carries. To go along with his touchdown run, Colter went 3-for-3 passing for 20 yards. The Wildcats racked up 99 yards of total offense in the quarter despite having the ball for only 4:11.

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Northwestern Vs. Minnesota 2012: TV, time and more

The Northwestern Wildcats will look to bounce back after their first loss of the season last Saturday when they travel to Minnesota to take on the Golden Gophers at 11 a.m. CT on ESPN2 this Saturday.

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Northwestern preps for Minnesota on Saturday

The Northwestern Wildcats (5-1) take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-1) on Saturday.

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