NAU takes on South Dakota in home opener

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Coming off its first win of the season, Northern Arizona will host South Dakota on Saturday in its home opener. Kickoff at the Walkup Skydome is set for 4 p.m.

The Lumberjacks are ranked No. 22 in the I Football Championship Subdivision coaches poll and No. 25 in the The Sports Network media poll after a pair of games. They will be going for their second straight win after coming away with a 21-10 victory on the road at UC Davis last weekend. NAU trailed by three points in the fourth quarter before senior safety Lucky Dozier recorded a pick-six to score what turned out to be the game-winning touchdown.

This will be the first-ever meeting between Northern Arizona and South Dakota, with both teams coming in at 1-1 and with a win over UC Davis.

The Coyotes opened their season with a 10-7 home victory over UC Davis but lost to Kansas 31-14 last week. Through two games, South Dakota has 414 rushing yards but just 158 passing yards, as quarterback Josh Vander Maten has gone 17 of 35 with one touchdown and one interception. Trevor Bouma is the leading rusher for the Coyotes, having totaled 147

yards on 27 carries, and Terrance Terry leads the team in receiving with 58 yards on six catches.

Last year, South Dakota’s first under coach Joe Glenn, the Coyotes went 1-10.

For NAU, senior running back Zach Bauman last week became the school’s all-time leading rusher, as he finished with 56 yards on 18 carries in the win. For his career, he now has 3,803 yards, which ranks ninth in the history of the Big Sky Conference. For the season, he has 137 yards on 39 carries.

At quarterback, first-year starter Kyren Poe has gone 32 of 63 for 301 yards with a touchdown and an interception for NAU, which has scored just one offensive touchdown this season. After being shut out by Arizona in the season opener, the Lumberjacks got two defensive scores last week, with Dozier’s interception return for a touchdown netting him Big Sky Defensive Player of the Week honors. Marcus Alford had NAU’s other pick-six.

Saturday’s game will be broadcast on FOX Sports Arizona Plus (click here for channel listings) and can also be viewed on