CALEDONIA -- The Cardinal Football team traveled to Davenport on Saturday and battled tough conditions to come away with a scrappy 24-17 overtime victory over the Panthers. SVSU got a 21 yard touchdown run from Ryan Conklin on the first possession of overtime and the SV defense stood solid towards the goal line to preserve the victory.
Davenport responded with a touchdown in the second quarter to tie the score at 7-7 with 7:50 showing on the clock.
SVSU had its special teams come up big late in the opening half, blocking and returning a punt for a score for the third time in two weeks to take a 14-7 edge. David Still blocked the punt and it was picked up by Bryce Anderson for the touchdown. It marks Anderson's second score off a blocked punt and second in as many weeks.
The Panthers trimmed a bit off that lead heading into the half, however, as Chris Ahmed hit a 42 yard field goal to make the score 14-10 in SVSU's advantage at halftime.
DU added another score with 6:28 left in the third quarter, using a touchdown rush to take the lead at 17-14.
The Cardinals responded with a Luksic 31 yard field goal as 11:16 was left in the game, tying the game at 17-17.
Saginaw Valley had a chance to seal a win as time expired, but a field goal try missed wide left and the game headed to overtime.
It did not take long for the Cards to get on the board, using a 21 yard rushing touchdown from Conklin on the first overtime possession to take a 24-17 lead after a Luksic extra-point.
After the Panthers chewed-off a nice run to begin their drive, the SVSU defense held tough and held the Panthers out of the endzone. That sealed the victory and an 8-3 overall record for the Cardinals.
Inside the Boxscore
- Conklin was named the Meijer "Player of the Game" after scoring the game-winning touchdown. He rushed for a team-best 65 yards, a score while adding 179 yards through the air with a touchdown.
- Gailliard had four catches for 117 yards and a touchdown.
- Michael Alexander had a game-best 13 tackles with 1.5 TFL.
- Sloan Klaski added nine stops with a fumble recovery.
- Austin Egler posted eight stops with a TFL.
- Still had the blocked punt and six stops, while Anderson had the return for a TD.
- Heath Williams stayed strong on the D-line, registering seven tackles and 3.5 sacks. Still had the other half sack for Saginaw Valley.
The Cardinals' regular season comes to a close with an overall record of 8-3 and a 5-3 mark in the GLIAC. SVSU still has an outside chance at a playoff spot. The eight wins are the most since the 2013 campaign for the Cardinals.
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