NDSU Suffers First Loss of Their Season at South Dakota State
The South Dakota State Jackrabbits handed the North Dakota State Bison their first loss of the season by a score of 33-21.
In a battle of two top-10 FCS teams, South Dakota State (7-2, 4-2) was just too much for the Bison to handle this Saturday. The Jackrabbits quarterback Taryn Christion threw for 329 yards on 233 of 33 passing with two touchdowns while also running another one in and tight end Dallas Goedert caugh 7 passes for 116 yards, including a 19-yard touchdown reception that all but sealed the game in the fourth quarter.
The Jackrabbits took the opening drive in the first quarter 75 yards in just 7 plays and went up 7-0 when Christion threw to Jacob Brown for a 14-yard score. After an exchange of punts, NDSU would tie it back up on a 4-yard touchdown pass from Easton Stick to Connor Wentz.
In the second quarter, the Jackrabbits had a 71-yard drive stall at the NDSU 4-yard line before going ahead 10-7 on a Chase Vinatieri field goal. Two Bison possessions later, Stick's pass was pick off near midfield by Jordan Brown. With good field position, SDSU would take nearly the rest of the half to get down to NDSU's goal line before Christion ran it in to make it 17-7 just 12 seconds before the half.
The Bison would respond with their first possession of the second half. Easton Stick threw to Ty Brooks on a 24-yard touchdown strike to make it 17-14. That would be as close as NDSU would get for the rest of the game.
On NDSU's next offensive possession, Stick fumbled and the Jackrabbits Alex Romenesko recovered at the Bison 30-yard line. Four plays later, Mikey Daniel ran a 5-yard touchdown in to make it 24-14. The Bison turned it over once again on their ensuing possession. This time, an interception thrown by Stick to SDSU's Makiah Slade. He would return the pick to the Bison 35-yard line, once again giving the Jackrabbits a short field. They would convert the turnover into three more points to take a 27-14 lead with 1:47 left in the 3rd quarter.
At the start of the fourth quarter, the Bison capitalized on an SDSU turnover when Jaylaan Wimbush recovered a muffed punt at the Jackrabbits 14-yard line. Two plays later, Stick would run a score in from 11-yards out to make it 27-21 with 13:56 left.
But the Jackrabbits responded on the ensuing possession going 86 yards on 11 plays before Christion hit Goedert from 19 yards out to make it 33-21. They would fail on the two point conversion try.
Turnovers plagued NDSU all day as their final two possessions resulted in a fumble and an interception. The Bison had 5 turnovers overall.
Stick finished 16 of 28 for 229 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. The Bison were held to just 108 yards rushing on the afternoon.
NDSU (8-1, 5-1) is still in front by a game in the Missouri Valley Conference and will take on another tough conference rival, South Dakota (7-1, 4-2) next Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at the Fargodome.