Courtesy: NDSU Athletics
FARGO, N.D. - Quarterback Taryn Christion accounted for 444 yards of total offense and 11th-ranked South Dakota State beat top-ranked North Dakota State 19-17 on Saturday, Oct. 15, before a sellout crowd of 18,828 at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.
SDSU (4-2, 3-0 MVFC) scored the game's final 16 points capped by Jake Wieneke's 2-yard touchdown catch with 1 second left in regulation. Christion was 7 of 11 passing and ran for a pair of first downs on the 14-play, 80-yard game-winning drive.
The Jackrabbits snapped an eight-game losing streak against the Bison and won the Dakota Marker trophy for the first time in seven years. It was SDSU's second win in Fargo since 1962.
"I thought they did some really good things in the second half adjusting to us offensively," said NDSU head coach Chris Klieman. "It's a good football team. I thought those were two really good football teams that went at it. It came down to our opportunities to make plays and I think we missed a couple opportunities that we'd like to have back."
North Dakota State (5-1, 2-1 MVFC) opened the scoring with an 18-play, 99-yard touchdown drive. The teams traded field goals, including a 49-yarder by NDSU's Cam Pedersen to close the first half, before NDSU took a 17-3 lead with a nine-play touchdown drive to start the third quarter.
SDSU turned over the ball on downs four times. The Jacks failed to convert from the NDSU 1 and 3 on their first two drives of the game, and Bison safety Tre Dempsey intercepted a first-and-goal pass from the NDSU 2 early in the fourth quarter to preserve a 17-10 Bison lead.
Christian Rozeboom's sack forced a Bison three-and-out on the next drive, and the Jacks took over at the 50 after a kick catching interference call against NDSU. Five plays later, Chase Vinatieri's 42-yard field goal cut the Bison lead to 17-13.
NDSU got another fourth down stop with 4:00 left in the game, but went three-and-out again and gave SDSU the ball with 2:28 left to play. The Jacks converted a pair of third downs on the final drive and advanced to the Bison 11 with a 25-yard pass from Christion to Wieneke inside 30 seconds to play.
Christion finished 24 of 42 passing for 303 yards and rushed 20 times for 141 yards. Tight end Dallas Goedert caught 11 passes for 150 yards and one score, and Wieneke finished with six receptions for 108 yards and a TD.
"We were probably on the field a little bit more than we wanted to be," Klieman said. "Sooner or later they are going to make enough plays, and let's credit Taryn Christion. He did a phenomenal job moving the chains with his feet."
NDSU quarterback Easton Stick was 14 of 20 for 143 yards and led the Bison rushing attack with 12 carries for 86 yards. Wide receiver Darrius Shepherd caught six passes for 74 yards.
Safety Robbie Grimsley made a career-high 14 tackles and middle linebacker Matt Plank had a career-high 12 tackles plus a pass breakup. Outside linebacker Pierre Gee-Tucker made nine stops with two tackles for loss and one sack.
North Dakota State is on the road for its next two games beginning Saturday, Oct. 22, at Western Illinois. The Fighting Leathernecks are 5-1 overall and 2-1 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference after a 38-35 victory at Missouri State.