Top-seeded Northwest Missouri State begins their quest of returning to the Division II National Championship Game. The Bearcats lost to Grand Valley State in last year’s title game and have huge hopes of getting back. Northwest finished the regular season unbeaten at 11-0. They will host Midwestern State, who beat MIAA Missouri Western in the first round.
The Bearcats should enter this afternoon’s game in good health. They earned a first-round bye which should have been enough time for RB Xavier Omon to recover from a rib injury. Freshman RB Sheldon Cook recorded his second consecutive 100-yard game in the regular season finale against Southwest Baptist.
The Mustangs advanced to the second round with a come from behind 28-26 win over Western at home. Midwestern, like many of its Lone Star Conference members, is built around speed.