VERMILLION, S.D. (AP) Backup quarterback Austin Simmons threw for two touchdowns as South Dakota edged Illinois State 27-24 on Saturday.
Simmons, a redshirt freshman filling in for injured starter Chris Streveler, had 205 yards on 13-of-30 passing for the Coyotes (4-3, 3-1 Missouri Valley). Michael Frederick ran for a score and Miles Bergner kicked a pair of field goals.
Simmons threw a 15-yard score Riley Donovan late in the first quarter and a 26-yard scoring strike to Tacari Carpenter late in the second and South Dakota led 24-17 at the break.
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Bergner's second field goal of the day, a 39-yarder, made it 27-17 with 4:46 left in the third quarter.
The Redbirds (3-5, 1-4) closed to within 27-24 in the fourth quarter on a 42-yard pass from Jake Kolbe to Christian Gibbs with 7:43 to play but that was the end of the scoring.