MARSHALL, MO. Baker quarterback Aaron Todd hit Sean Gibbs with a two-yard touchdown pass with 1:25 remaining to lift the Wildcats to a 13-10 college football victory over Missouri Valley here Saturday.
With 3:31 left, Baker punted to Valley after a stalled drive. But MoValley fumbled the ball, and Baker's Greg Faimon recovered on the Missouri Valley 18-yard line.
The Wildcats marched to the two in five plays, and, eschewing a try for the game-tying field goal, Todd hit Gibbs with the game-winner on fourth-and-goal.
"We had a lot of trouble making a decision down there of going for a field goal to protect ourselves from the loss," BU coach Dan Harris said. "But we decided, having one tie already, that we had to just suck it up, have some guts and go for the touchdown. The kids probably called the play. I think they influenced me."
GIBBS PUT the Wildcats in the lead with a four-yard touchdown run in the second quarter. Jason Holt's kick gave Baker a 7-0 lead, but MoValley went up, 10-7, in the second period.
"We went in at the half being down three points," Harris said. "It had an impact on us. I think the kids realized they'd have to turn it up a little bit."
Michael Hunt led Baker with 60 rushing yards on 12 carries. Paul Hummel had 29 yards on 11 carries.
The Wildcats managed 88 rushing yards on 38 carries against the NAIA's No. 1 rush defense.
Todd completed eight of 20 passes for 83 yards.
Defensively, BU linebacker Jeff Summers had 17 tackles, and Robert Villafranca had three interceptions.
Missouri Valley's Shawn Whitley gained 172 yards and a touchdown on 32 carries.
Baker improved to 5-2-1. Its playoff hopes remained alive since William Jewell lost, 23-21, to Graceland on Saturday.
Baker will host Mid-American Nazarene College on Saturday. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.
FJ Missouri Valley
B Sean Gibbs 4 run (Jason Holt kick)
MV Hughes 27 FG
MV Shawn Whitley 12 run (Hughes kick)
B Gibbs 3 pass from Aaron Todd (kick fail)