Lombardi lifts Northern Illinois previous Georgia Tech, 22-21


Northern Illinois linebacker Lance Deveaux Jr. (2) celebrates for the duration of the initial 50 percent of an NCAA school football sport against Ga Tech, Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photograph/Danny Karnik)


Thomas Hammock had no interest in his underdog Northern Illinois staff settling for an overtime in opposition to Georgia Tech.

Once Rocky Lombardi’s next landing go in the final moment introduced the Huskies to in just one position, Hammock failed to be reluctant to continue to keep his offense on the industry. The coach purchased a 2-level participate in for the get.

Lombardi’s 2-point pass to Tyrice Richie with 38 seconds remaining survived an officials critique and lifted Northern Illinois to a spectacular 22-21 upset gain more than Georgia Tech on Saturday evening.

Hammock claimed a probable tying kick wasn’t an pleasing possibility following Lombardi’s 3-property touchdown go to Clint Ratkovich lower Georgia Tech’s direct to 21-20.

“Easy conclusion,” Hammock said. “We arrived in this article to acquire and we anticipated to gain and that’s what we got finished.”

Ga Tech of the Atlantic Coast Convention was favored by 18 1/2 factors about Northern Illinois, of the Mid-American Meeting.

Northern Illinois led 14- but had a regroup soon after backup quarterback Jordan Yates, playing soon after Jeff Sims suffered an arm injury, rallied the Yellow Jackets with 3 unanswered touchdowns. Looking at his team rally but then shed in the final minute was a crushing start out to Ga Tech mentor Geoff Collins’ 3rd period.

“Obviously, it hurts,” Collins mentioned. “There’s a good deal of men in that locker area who are harm.”

Lombardi, the Michigan State transfer, was provided 1 final possession with 2:42 remaining. He made his debut for Northern Illinois (1-) a single to recall by directing the go-in advance travel that started with a 38-garden completion to Richie.

On the 2-point participate in, Lombardi rolled suitable just before passing to Richie, whose leaping catch had to be reviewed. He landed with his arms outstretched and the ball took a smaller bounce as he hit the area. The replay indicated he kept his remaining hand less than the ball, protecting against the ball from hitting the subject.

Gavin Stewart’s last-second, 60-yard field goal try for Georgia Tech (-1) was blocked. The block activated a celebration by North Illinois gamers, who bounced onto the field from the sideline.

Yates’ 4-yard landing run with 6:32 remaining gave the Yellow Jackets their 1st direct at 21-14.

Sims remaining the sport in the 2nd quarter with a left arm injury. His left arm was in a sling as he watched on the sideline in the 2nd 50 %.

Harrison Waylee, who rushed for 144 yards for Northern Illinois, fumbled when hit by Wesley Walker in the fourth quarter. Quez Jackson recovered to set up Ga Tech’s go-forward touchdown.

Northern Illinois linebacker Lance Deveaux Jr. picked up a Jordan Mason fumble and ran into the conclude zone for an evident touchdown and 20- guide. A lengthy review led to the landing get in touch with on the area getting overturned because Mason’s knee was down before he shed the ball.

The reversal opened the way for Yates to guide a 16-enjoy, 97-property drive. Yates obtained first downs on a few third-down operates of nine yards or longer in advance of completing a 22-lawn move to Kyric McGowan. It was Yates’ 1st vocation landing move.

The Yellow Jackets had been stopped at the Northern Illinois 2 early in the 2nd half when a movie critique determined McGowan’s left foot was out of bounds on a 2-garden catch initially dominated a touchdown.

Dontae Smith’s 15-lawn touchdown run on his initial have of the recreation tied the score with 7:44 remaining. Yates’ 53-yard go to Malachi Carter set up the score.


Northern Illinois: Lombardi’s encounter confirmed as he directed the Huskies’ operate-very first offense led by Waylee, who experienced a 35-garden touchdown operate in the very first quarter. The Huskies leaned on their actual physical offensive line. The low issue came when security Devin Lafayette experienced an obvious remaining leg personal injury late in the initially 50 % and was taken off the industry in an ambulance.

Georgia Tech: The Yellow Jackets outgained the Huskies 429-301, such as 273 yards dashing. Jahmyr Gibbs ran for 99 yards on 20 carries. Mason extra 96 yards. Ga Tech claimed a dominant 25-15 edge in 1st downs. In the long run, the Yellow Jackets ended up damage by their incapability to convert the yards into points.


Lombardi concluded 11 of 17 passes for 136 yards and two touchdowns. “He’s a difficult man,” Hammock mentioned. “He confirmed us what he’s about. He’s a chief. He’s a great warrior on the discipline. He’s an extension of the coaches.”


Collins appeared to allow admirers to impact a crucial decision when North Illinois led 14-7. He sent his offense back on the discipline for a fourth-and-purpose engage in at the Northern Illinois 2 right after lovers booed when kicker Brent Cimaglia, who missed two area goal makes an attempt in the to start with 50 percent, came on to the industry.

The improve set up the failed fourth-down engage in when McGowan was ruled out of bounds.

The missing points from a potential small field goal could have improved conclusions in the final moment.

UP Upcoming

Northern Illinois: The Huskies will engage in Wyoming in their house opener following Saturday.

Georgia Tech: Kennesaw State, which opened with a 35-25 acquire more than NAIA school Reinhardt University on Thursday, visits the Yellow Jackets upcoming Saturday.

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