SIU still seeking conference win after loss to ISU

By Tamar Mosby, Sports Reporter

The Dawgs (1-4, 0-3 MVFC) fell in this evening’s football matchup against the Illinois State University Redbirds (4-0, 1-1 MVFC) losing the game 51-3.

The two teams have met every season dating back to 1970.

SIU has led the series against the Redbirds since 2002 with the record being 9-7.

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The Salukis came into tonight’s homecoming matchup at ISU still seeking to win their first conference game.

Southern has been losing players all season due to injuries and only 11 of the 22 starting players from their season opener are currently playing.

Despite this fact, fifth-year senior Sam Straub returned to the Saluki lineup today after missing the previous game due to a concussion.

Straub finished the game throwing 103 yards.

Junior Jeremy Chinn also returned to the lineup at the start of the second half after being ejected in the previous game at Youngstown State for targeting.

Chinn tallied six tackles in the second half with five of them being solos.

The homecoming game in Normal began with a moment of silence for SIU Chancellor Carlo Montemagno, who passed away on Thursday.

The Redbirds started the first quarter with a 12 play 87-yard scoring drive to record a touchdown and put them up 7-0 against the Salukis.

SIU, with no progress in their prior possession, was able to hold off Illinois State on the defensive end until the start of the second quarter.

At the beginning of the second quarter, ISU kicker JT Bohlken completed a 35-yard field goal on a six-play 62-yard drive putting the Redbirds up by another three points with the Dawgs still scoreless.

With Southern still being unable to tally points on the board, ISU continued to rally on the offensive end and completed a ten-yard touchdown pass bringing the score to 17-0.

A 44-yard rush in the following drive by the Redbirds fueled another five-play, 65-yard drive leading them to score another touchdown making the score 24-0 with the Salukis still struggling to find an offensive rhythm.

Redshirt freshman linebacker Luke Giegling created an opportunity for the Salukis to score before the end of the half by catching the first interception of his career and giving Redbird quarterback Brady Davis his first thrown interception of the season.

The interception could not give the Dawgs enough momentum to get on the board and possession went back to ISU.

Giegling tallied seven tackles for Southern with four of them being solos.

ISU’s Davis finished with 118 total yards and four touchdowns thrown.

Illinois State showed no signs of letting up lengthening their lead by another touchdown on a six-play 71-yard drive just before the end of the half leaving the score 31-0 at halftime.

In the start of the second half, the Salukis continued their fight to get onto the scoreboard and succeeded in scoring a 26-yard field goal.

The Redbirds’ junior running back Markel Smith responded almost immediately with a 51-yard rush on a two play 52-yard drive to give ISU yet another touchdown raising the score 38-3 entering the fourth quarter.

ISU went on to score two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter, while the Salukis were unable to reach the Redbird end zone for the remainder of the game with their total points remaining at three.

The Dawgs offense totaled 202 yards, while the defense tallied 76 tackles which were five ahead of ISU’s defensive line, who only totaled 71 tackles.

Southern will take their home field next Saturday against the Indiana State University Sycamores during homecoming weekend. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m.

Sports reporter Tamar Mosby can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @mosbytamar.

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