Around the MVFC: Week 6 results

By Gus Bode

Looking for the win, South Dakota State’s two-point conversion in the third overtime of an offensive shootout was stopped and McNeese State defeated the Jackrabbits 46-44 in dramatic fashion.

McNeese State opened the third overtime with a 14-yard touchdown run and SDSU responded on the next drive with a touchdown of its own. But the failed two-point conversion doomed the Jackrabbits.

SDSU quarterback Ryan Berry passed for 317 yards and four touchdowns as the Jackrabbits recorded 412 yards of total offense.

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The SDSU loss gives the Jackrabbits a 3-3 record on the season and is their second loss in two weeks.

South Dakota State will host Cal Poly next week before diving into Missouri Valley Football Conference action with five straight conference games.

Illinois State 57, Indiana State 6

The Redbirds recorded more than 500 yards of total offense and featured two running backs with more than 100 yards rushing as Illinois State crushed the Sycamores Saturday.

Redbird running backs Geno Blow and Walter Mendenhall ran for 119 yards and 103 yards, respectively, and each scored two touchdowns.

The Sycamores (0-5, 0-1 MVFC) have lost 19 straight games since 2006 and have been outscored 219-33 this season.

Illinois State gave up an early field goal but took the lead on the first touchdown by Blow and cruised to an easy 57-6 win.

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The Redbirds (2-2, 1-0 MVFC) scored on five of their first six possessions and rushed for 410 yards throughout the game.

Northern Iowa 34, Nicholls State 14

The Panthers, fresh off a last second defeat to SIU last week, bounced back and outscored Nicholls State 20-7 in the second half to defeat the Colonels 34-14 in Cedar Falls, Iowa, Saturday.

UNI quarterback Pat Grace rushed for two touchdowns and threw for 152 yards and a score while running back Derrick Law rushed for 51 yards and a touchdown to secure the Panthers’ third win of the season.

The Panthers (3-2, 1-1 MVFC) recorded 378 yards of total offense and came from behind for the second consecutive game this season.

UNI forced three turnovers, including an interception in the fourth quarter that essentially put the game out of reach for Nicholls State.

The Panthers return to conference action next week and will host Illinois State, which currently sits atop the Missouri Valley Football Conference standings with a 1-0 conference record.

Indiana State, meanwhile, was limited to just 113 total yards, 14 passing yards and 99 rushing yards.

Illinois State travels to Northern Iowa next week to take on conference heavyweight Northern Iowa while Indiana State heads to Carbondale to take on SIU in its homecoming game.

Southern Utah 14, Youngstown State 7

Southern Utah returned a fumble for 54 yards late in the third quarter and stopped Youngstown State in its final drive at the 18-yard line with 28 seconds remaining in the game as the Thunderbirds defeated the Penguins 14-7.

Youngstown (2-4, 1-1 MVFC) looked poised to tie the game late in the fourth quarter and drove the ball 68 yards in the final three minutes of the game but were stopped short for its fourth loss of the season, which significantly reduces the Penguins’ shot at a playoff birth.

Penguins starting quarterback left the game in the second quarter after he suffered a sprained knee on a sack and back up Paul Corsaro stepped in to complete 10-of-21 passing attempts for 97 yards.

The Southern Utah win was the first time that it has won consecutive games against Football Championship Subdivision opponents since the final two games of the 2004 season.

Youngstown, which jumped to a 7-0 lead early in the first quarter was shut out in the second half and will look to get back on track next week when it travels to Missouri State.

Western Illinois 33, Missouri State 21

Western Illinois running back Herb Donaldson showed his offensive prowess against Missouri State as the Payton Award candidate scored four touchdowns and rushed for 273 yards to lead the Leathernecks over the Bears in Springfield, Mo.

Western Illinois (3-2, 1-1 MVFC) scored three times in the first half and held off a second-half rally by the Bears (1-3, 0-1 MVFC) before pulling away with two Donaldson touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

Donaldson accounted for 293 of the 520 total offensive yards for Western Illinois and logged one of his most dominant games this season.

Western Illinois will travel to North Dakota State next week to take on the Bison while Missouri State will host Youngstown State.

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