Big 3rd quarter lifts Montana St. past SE Missouri St. 38-17
BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) — Troy Andersen ran for two touchdowns and had two tackles for loss to lead Montana State to a 38-17 win over Southeast Missouri State on Saturday night.
After an error-filled first half, the Bobcats (1-1) scored 28 points in the third quarter accumulating 240 yards in the process. Andersen ran for 102 yards on just six carries. Isaiah Ifanse had 114 yards rushing in the first half, but sat out the second half with an undisclosed injury.
“He’s a special, selfless dude,” MSU wide receiver Kevin Kassis said of Andersen. “We wouldn’t be the same without him.”
MSU, which came into the game one-spot behind SEMO at No. 13 in the FCS poll, got off to a hot start with Andersen running for a 38-yard touchdown on the Bobcats second play of the game. The Bobcats drove 63 yards for a field goal on their second possession, but struggled for the rest of the half. SEMO scored after picking up a fumbled snap on a punt attempt.
The Redhawks (1-1) found the end zone three plays later when Daniel Santacaterina hit Kristian Wilkerson with a 5-yard pass. Kendrick Tiller connected on a 55-yard field goal for the Redhawks with no time remaining that tied the game 10-10 at halftime that was set up by a roughing the quarterback penalty.
“We were disappointed we didn’t score more in the first half,” Kassis said. “The little things we messed up on hurt.”
Ifanse’s 62-yard jaunt that placed MSU on the SEMO 7 didn’t net the Bobcats any points as offensive lineman Mitch Brott was called for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and MSU missed a field goal from 43 yards. JoJo Henderson intercepted a pass and returned the ball to the SEMO 38 on the next SEMO possession, but Casey Bauman was sacked and MSU came away scoreless again.
Travis Jonsen was credited with a 55-yard touchdown pass to Logan Jones for MSU’s third score of the third quarter after he flipped the ball to Jones in the backfield. Bauman threw for 102 yards in the second half.
The Bobcats held Santacaterina, who was the Ohio Valley first team all-conference quarterback, to just 114 yards passing. He was sacked five times and hit hard several other times.
“As the game progressed, (Santacaterina) was getting more and more jittery,” defensive end Bryce Sterk said. “We go to him a lot.”
Southeast Missouri State: The Redhawks travel to Missouri on Saturday to face the FBS Tigers.
Montana State: The Bobcats play at Western Illinois on Saturday.