Northwest Missouri State takes the field against Central Oklahoma (photo/Bearcat Athletics)

Northwest Missouri State, ranked No. 1 in the AFCA top 25 in Division II, improved to 6-0. The Bearcats increased their winning streak to 36 straight games after a 17-10 win over Central Oklahoma during the school’s Military Appreciation Day in Maryville, Mo. on Saturday.  The 36 straight wins in a row is the second longest streak in D-II history.

“I am proud of our guys,” Northwest coach Rich Wright told “I was telling our guys we live under the microscope. There are no style points for winning football games. That was gutty effort today. We were missing a lot of pieces. The way those kids hung in there for four quarters and battled, I was proud of them. We lost a couple of more receivers today. We are finding ways to win. As long as we do that, once we get back healthy, we will have a chance.”

The Bearcats last lost came on Nov. 22, 2014 in the first round of the Division II playoffs to Minnesota-Duluth.

In fact, dating back to Sept. 5, 2013, the Bearcats have gone 61-2 which includes three undefeated seasons and three national championships in the last four years.

By the way, Grand Valley State holds the longest win streak of D-II at 40 games.  If Northwest ties the record, they will do so on Senior Day on Nov. 4 against Ft. Hays State.  If the Bearcats are fortunate enough to get to that spot, their opportunity to set the all-time record would have to take place at their rival’s field just down the road in St. Joseph at Missouri Western on Nov. 11.

Interesting side notes:  Northwest lost twice to Grand Valley State during their record run of 40 straight wins.  Both losses came in the Division II national title games.  The Bearcats lost in 2005, 21-17.  In the championship game in 2006, the Bearcats lost to GVS 17-14 for the D-II national title.  Grand Valley had their win streak stopped by none other than Northwest in the D-II semifinals in Maryville on Dec. 8, 2007 with a 34-16 win for the Bearcats.