Following their seventh straight win, North Dakota State College of Science moved up to No. 20 in the Week 10 NJCAA Top 20 Poll.
NDSCS shutout Dakota College - Bottineau on Sunday, 27-0, to advance to the MCAC Semifinals. Freshman phenom Desean Phillips rushed for 101 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Eric Issendorf's defense allowed just 209 yards of total offense and forced three turnovers, including a 32-yard pick-6 by defensive back Tavion Wells.
The Wildcats defense has recorded shutouts in two of their last six games, holding opponents to just 8 PPG during that span. They currently rank 15th nationally in points allowed (15.9) and eighth in interceptions (14). The Cats are one of 14 teams in the country to hold opponents under 100 yards rushing per game on average.
Phillips leads the nation in rushing yards (1,112), rushing yards per game (123.6) and second in rushing touchdowns (15). Sophomore Nate Seward is second nationally in interceptions with six. His nine passes broken up is tied for the 10th highest total. Both will be All-American candidates.
Mississippi Gulf Coast retained its No. 1 ranking, picking up 15 of 16 first-place votes. Lackawanna (PA), Kilgore (TX), Hutchinson (KS) and Garden City (KS) round out the top five.
NDSCS will host Itasca on Sunday in the MCAC Playoffs. Itasca is receicing votes in the top 20 poll. That game is slated for a 1:30 p.m. kickoff at Frank Vertin Field with the winner advancing to the MCAC Championship Game in St. Cloud.
FULL NJCAA POLL: http://njcaa.org/sports/fball/polls