HUNTSVILLE, Tex. — The No. 2 CSU-Pueblo football team didn’t flinch when head coach John Wristen told his team they would be playing Division I, FCS Sam Houston State in 2014. The Pack didn’t flinch Saturday either, when they posted a 47-21 program-defining victory against the FCS- ranked No. 15 Sam Houston State at Bowers Stadium in Huntsville, Texas.
The Pack extends their regular season winning streak to 39 games, while ending the longest current home winning streak in the FCS.
The first half was all the Pack needed to roll to victory, as it dominated the opening 30 minutes, leading 27-0 at the break. CSU-Pueblo held the ball for 18:15, led 12-1 in first downs and totaled 206 yards to the Bearkats’ one in the first half.
No. 1 Northwest Missouri State 40, Missouri Southern 14
JOPLIN, Mo. — Top-ranked Northwest Missouri State moved to 2-0 on the season with a 40-14 victory against Missouri Southern State on Thursday night at Fred G. Hughes Stadium.
The Bearcats scored 20 unanswered points to capture the victory. Brady Bolles and Phil Jackson II each found the end zone on the ground twice. Bolles also completed 19-of-28 passes for 212 yards and two touchdowns. He ran 13 times for 34 yards.
Jackson had 15 carries for 86 yards and two scores. He was not stopped for a loss all game.
Bolles completed passes to nine different receivers led by Bryce Young, Jason Jozaites and Korey Jackson with four each. TJ Schieber and Jacob Vollstedt each had touchdown catches from Bolles in the first half.
Northwest racked up 383 yards of total offense, 212 yards in the air and 171 on the ground. Defensively, Northwest allowed just 177 yards of rushing to last year’s MIAA team rushing leader. For the second consecutive year, the Lions did not gain a yard through the air on the Bearcats. MSSU attempted five passes with two interceptions.
No. 3 Minn-Duluth 23, Augustana 22
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — Because it has rarely trailed at any point in a football game — particularly the second half — over the past seven seasons, the Minnesota Duluth hasn’t posted a whole lot of come-from-behind victories.
Saturday afternoon in Sioux Falls, S.D., the No. 3 Bulldogs found themselves in one of those uncommon predicaments, down 16-6 with just over five minutes to go in the fourth quarter. They came through big time with a thrilling 23-22 overtime win against Augustana. UMD cashed in on its first possession of the extra session, getting a six-yard touchdown run from sophomore quarterback Drew Bauer and the Vikings then responded with a score of their own, only to have the point-after kick attempt hit the left cross bar.
With the victory, the Bulldogs extended their regular season winning streak 10 games and hiked their 2014 record to 2-0. The Vikings, who were making their 2014 home debut, fell to 1-1 on the year.
Bauer finished the afternoon with 246 yards passing yards while equaling a personal high for completions (20) and setting a career best for attempts (40). His favorite target was Bofferding, who caught 10 passes for 105 yards. Bauer also paced the Bulldogs in rushing, with 60 yards on 14 carries. The Bulldogs held a subtantial 415-292 advantage in total offense and limited the Vikings to a mere 40 yards on the ground.
No. 4 MSU Mankato 69, MSU Moorhead 13
MOORHEAD, Minn. — The third-rated Minnesota State football team kept its momentum up Saturday afternoon on the road as it trounced the MSU Moorhead Dragons by the score of 69-13.
With the win, the Mavericks improve to 2-0 on the season, while the Dragons drop to 0-2 on the season. The Maverick offense clicked all game long against the Dragons as it posted 611 yards of total offense, including 350 rushing yards.
Junior Connor Thomas added 89 rushing yards and two touchdowns, while senior Andy Pfeiffer notched 68 rushing yards and one touchdown. Junior Anthony Lewis added an additional rushing touchdown as well.
Through the air, senior Dorian Buford proved to be a hot target as he notched 117 receiving yards and four touchdown catches. Senior Keyvan Rudd caught two passes for 59 yards as well.
MSU’s sophomore quarterbacks in Ricky Lloyd and Nick Pieruccini each threw a pair of touchdown passes against the Dragons. Lloyd connected on 7-of-15 passes for 116 yards, while Pieruccini added 102 passing yards, while connecting on 4-of-6 passing attempts. Sophomore Neico Stokke also threw a 32-yard touchdown pass to Austin Rieder.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Mavericks held the Dragons to a total of 13 points and 271 yards of total offense.
No. 6 Lenoir-Rhyne 33, Virginia State 6
ETTRICK, Va. — Lenoir-Rhyne scored the game’s final 23 points en route to a 33-6 victory against Virginia State Saturday afternoon at Rogers Stadium.
Lenoir-Rhyne senior fullback Chris Robinson rushed for a career-high 145 yards while the defense registered five quarterback sacks as the Bears improved to 2-0 on the year for the first time since the 2008 season.
After Lenoir-Rhyne senior placekickerJustin Powell (Connelly Springs, N.C.) kicked his second field goal of the day for a 13-6 advantage late in the third quarter, the Bears took control with 20 points in the final period.
Virginia State was led by Tarian Ayres with 173 yards passing and Kavon Bellamy with 75 yards rushing and a one-yard touchdown run despite the loss. The Bears limited the Trojans to just 257 yards of total offense in the victory as well.
No. 8 Pittsburg State 38, Lindenwood 7
ST. CHARLES, Mo. — Quarterback Anthony Abenoja passed for 328 yards and three touchdowns to lead eighth-ranked Pittsburg State to a 38-7 victory against Lindenwood on Thursday at Hunter Stadium.
The Gorillas (2-0, 2-0 MIAA) claimed their 15th consecutive road victory dating back to the 2010 season, while handing the Lions (1-1, 1-1 MIAA) their first home-opening loss in 12 years.
Abenoja, who became Pitt State’s all-time passing yardage leader on the Gorillas’ opening drive of the game, tossed touchdown passes of 18 yards to Jeff Seybold, 14 yards to Gavin Lutman and 11 yards to Marquise Cushon.
Deron Washington added a 98-yard interception return for a touchdown for the Gorillas, turning a potential Lions score into a pick six.
The Lions, who were limited to 189 yards of total offense in the game, ended the Gorillas’ bid for a second consecutive shutout on Stephen Kaiser’s 14-yard run with 3:01 to play against the Pitt State reserves.
Cushon caught five passes for a career high 140 yards, all in the first half. He also returned a pair of punts 73 yards to finish the game with 213 all-purpose yards.
No. 9 West Chester 38 Mercyhurst 14
WEST CHESTER, Pa. — Sixth-year QB Sean McCartney completed 23 of 35 passes for 306 yards and three touchdowns, while also running for another score, to lead No. 9 West Chester to a 38-14 victory against visiting Mercyhurst in its home opener Saturday afternoon at John A. Farrell Stadium.
West Chester (2-0, 1-0 PSAC) jumped out to an early 21-0 lead after the first quarter on a pair of big plays. Wide receiver Erick Brundidge caught a pass in the flats at his own 26-yard line, broke two tackles and raced down the far sideline for a 74-yard TD that put the Golden Rams on top, 14-0. Then, defensive back Drew Formica intercepted a pass and returned it 39 yards for a touchdown to give the hosts a three-touchdown lead after 15 minutes. That pick was set up when Ronell Williams delivered a crushing hit on Mercyhurst QB Zach Emerick just as he released the ball.
Mercyhurst (0-2, 0-1) never could recover from the early hole that it dug itself.
The Lakers finally got on the board late in the second quarter when Michael Foster returned a fumble 43 yards for a touchdown. But, it was the only score the visitors could muster until the middle of the fourth quarter.
West Chester racked up 418 yards of total offense, and McCartney looked like he was in sync with his wide receivers. He distributed his 23 completions to seven different targets. Mercyhurst had 255 yards of total offense. Lakers’ star running back, Brandon Brown-Dukes managed just 39 yards rushing on 15 carries in the game.