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The Northwest Missouri State University Bearcats are the 2009 Division II National Champions as they defeated Grand Valley State 30-23 in Florence Alabama Saturday December 12th. It's the third National Football Championship for Northwest and their seventh appearance in the past 12 years.
Senior running back Laron Council rushed for 172 yards and two touchdowns on the day and Jake Soy scored on a 26 yard pass completion in the fourth quarter giving him nine catches and 118 yards for the afternoon.
A game of big plays by the Bearcats and certainly none more entertaining than Trent Covington's block on Jordan Simmons punt return in the first half. The block by Covington made ESPN's top 10 plays of the weekend as he laid out a Laker coverage man to help Simmons break off a long return and put the Bearcats in great field position.
The Bearcats end the 2009 campaign with a 14-1 record, the Division II National Championship and their coach Mel Tjeerdsma to be inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame on January 31st along with other inductees including Marty Schottenheimer, former Kansas City Chiefs coach, Kellen Winslow Sr., NFL Hall of Famer and tight end from Missouri and Mark Gubicza of the Kansas City Royals.
John Coffey talks with Bearcat head coach Mel Tjeerdsma about the win. The interview was recorded Monday afternoon at 1 o'clock from Maryville's Hy-Vee, located at 1217 South Main.