Winfield, Odim lead Bulldogs to big victory

If Minnesota Duluth was worried about a letdown in its Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference opener at Upper Iowa, it took junior D.J. Winfield only 10 seconds to ease any doubts.

D.J. Winfield
UMD football player D.J. Winfield

If Minnesota Duluth was worried about a letdown in its Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference opener at Upper Iowa, it took junior D.J. Winfield only 10 seconds to ease any doubts.

Winfield took the opening kickoff 76 yards to spark Minnesota Duluth to a fast start, and senior running back Isaac Odim rushed for 163 yards and five first-half touchdowns as the second-ranked Bulldogs rolled to a 62-13 victory before 902 fans at Eb Eischeid Stadium in Fayette, Iowa.

Winfield finished with 321 all-purpose yards.

"Any time you get an opening kickoff return like that, it's a great start to a football game," said UMD coach Bob Nielson. "Then we played very well offensively. We moved the football consistently. We were able to run the football and control the pace of the game. Even though Upper Iowa did some things offensively that were really good in the first half, kind of making it an up-and-down game, we just consistently put points on the board and separated ourselves."

UMD (2-0 overall, 1-0 NSIC) led 48-13 at the half and scored on its first two drives of the second half to complete the scoring.


Winfield was his usual multidimensional self. His opening 76-yard return helped get the Bulldogs to the Upper Iowa 4-yard line, and then Odim scored on the first play of the game.

Winfield later returned another kick 85 yards for a touchdown, and in the third quarter he caught an 86-yard touchdown pass from Chase Vogler. In all, Winfield returned three kicks for 163 yards and three punts for 15 yards, caught three passes for 126 yards and ran two times for 17 yards.

"D.J. came out and made a big play right from the start," Odim said. "That's the best thing you could ask for. He made it easy for me to rush it into the end zone."

UMD had 505 total yards, including 328 rushing yards. Two weeks after being held to 50 yards, a UMD low for Odim, the senior running back needed only 15 carries to get his 163 yards, good for a 10.8-yard-per-carry average. Junior Justin Claiborne added 13 carries for 71 yards, while Vogler was 4-for-6 passing for 148 yards and two TDs. Free safety Cameron Harper had seven tackles to lead the defense.

Senior quarterback Ben Curran was 12-for-21 for 105 yards and a touchdown to lead Upper Iowa (0-2, 0-1). The Peacocks had 277 total yards.

"Our line was blocking really well and getting a big push up front," Odim said. "They were getting up to the second level. It felt like we could do it all day, and it didn't seem to matter who we had back there. That's a testament to our line and how well they were blocking. We probably passed like six times in the first half. The run game was working, so that's what we stuck with."

UMD's win sets up an NSIC showdown with No. 22 Wayne State next weekend in the Bulldogs' home opener. Wayne State opened the season with a 24-17 overtime victory at Nebraska-Kearney, a 2009 NCAA Division II playoff team, and on Saturday rolled to a 68-6 home victory over Minnesota-Crookston.

After having last weekend off, UMD is back to a normal week of practice in preparation for the Wildcats.


"It's going to be a great atmosphere being our home opener," Odim said. "We'll have a lot of fans there and have to play our best game to beat this team. It will really be a measuring stick to how well we're going to do in the conference. We'll have three full days of practice to prepare, and this is something we have to get used to quickly because this is how it's going to be for the rest of the season."

Minnesota Duluth14-34-14-0--62

Upper Iowa3-10-0-0--13

First Quarter
UMD -- Isaac Odim 4 run (David Nadeau kick), 14:40
UMD -- Odim 13 run (Nadeau kick), 5:42
UIU -- Tyler Parmenter 32 field goal, 2:43
Second Quarter
UMD -- Odim 8 run (Nadeau kick), 14:52
UIU -- Parmenter 26 field goal, 12:54
UMD -- D.J. Winfield 85 kick return (Nadeau kick), 12:40
UIU -- La'Mont Williams 6 pass from Ben Curran (Parmenter kick), 7:12
UMD -- Odim 24 run (Nadeau kick), 3:32
UMD -- Rob Huberty 15 fumble recovery (Nadeau kick), 3:15
UMD -- Odim 42 run (Nadeau kick), 1:47
Third Quarter
UMD -- Winfield 86 pass from Chase Vogler (Nadeau kick), 11:19
UMD -- D'Andre Sherill 19 pass from Vogler (Nadeau kick), 2:42
A -- 902


First downs2112





Kick returns-yards4-1898-178




Time of possession32:1927:41

RUSHING -- UMD - Odim 15-163, Justin Claiborne 13-71, Chaz Thomas 8-51, Brad Foss 8-27, Winfield 2-17, Vogler 3-1, Team 1-2. Upper Iowa - Jordan Otdoerfer 7-35, Jessie Hubbard 2-25, Sam Epsteen 6-22, Marcus West 7-14, Curran 2-5, Drew Kaluzny 5-2, La'Mont Williams 1-1, J.P. McClung 1-0.
PASSING -- UMD - Vogler 4-6-0-148, Jon Lynch 1-2-0-29. Upper Iowa - Curran 12-21-0-105, Kaluzny 7-12-1-68.
RECEIVING -- UMD - Winfield 3-126, Pat Alexander 1-31, Sherill 1-19. Upper Iowa - Dominique Jackson 5-47, Hubbard 4-56, Williams 3-33, John Baldwin 2-18, West 1-12, Kinon O'Neal 1-5, Otdoerfer 1-2, Joe Alanis 1-2, Zach Schaeffer 1-2.


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