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Big Sky’s one-loss teams all keep up the pace in conference-championship race

UPDATED: Sat., Nov. 11, 2017, 10:49 p.m.

Northern Colorado defensive back Isaiah Swopes intercepts a pass intended for Montana wide receiver Brennan Corbin in the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, in Missoula. (Patrick Record / Associated Press)
Northern Colorado defensive back Isaiah Swopes intercepts a pass intended for Montana wide receiver Brennan Corbin in the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017, in Missoula. (Patrick Record / Associated Press)

Joe Logan ran for 142 yards and two scores and his 2-yard plunge with 4:49 remaining gave Northern Arizona the lead for good in its 37-36 win against Montana State on Saturday night in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Logan’s final touchdown put Northern Arizona (7-3, 6-1 Big Sky) out front 37-30, but the Bobcats marched 75-yards in 10-plays and scored with 32 seconds left when Chris Murray threw a 21-yard score to Kevin Kassis to reduce the deficit to 37-36.

The Bobcats (4-6, 4-3) played for the win but the 2-point conversion failed. The Lumberjacks recovered the on-side kick and downed the ball to end the game.

Case Cookus threw for 314 yards and a touchdown in his return to action after being ejected last week for targeting in a 17-15 loss at Montana. The Lumberjacks remain in a three-way tie atop the conference with Southern Utah and Weber State.

Murray threw for 155 yards and two scores and ran for 85 yards and two scores for Montana State. Nick LaSane had 184 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown.

Weber State 63, Portland State 17: Treshawn Garrett ran for 88 yards and three touchdowns as the Wildcats (8-2, 6-1 Big Sky) scored 56 unanswered points in their rout of the Vikings (0-10, 0-7) in Portland.

Stefan Cantwell threw for 157 yards and a touchdown and ran for another score before leaving the second half to backup Braden Miles. Kevin Smith ran for 143 yards and two touchdowns and David Jones had 103 rushing yards and a score. Rashid Shaheed had a touchdown catch and a 90-yard kickoff return for another score.

Southern Utah 47, UC Davis 27: Patrick Tyler was 26-of-36 passing for 370 yards and three touchdowns and Jay Green ran for two scores to help the Thunderbirds (8-2, 6-1) defeat the Aggies (5-5, 3-4) at Davis, California.

Green had 64 yards rushing on 18 carries and Ty Rutledge finished with three receptions for 105 yards and two scores for the Thunderbirds.

Montana 44, Northern Colorado 14: Freshman quarterback Gresch Jensen threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score, and the Grizzlies (7-3, 5-2 Big Sky) intercepted five passes in their rout of the Bears (2-7, 1-6) in Missoula.

Jensen, returning to the lineup after missing the Grizzlies’ 17-15 win over Northern Arizona last week with a concussion, broke a 7-7 tie with a 6-yard pass to Makena Simis at 3:43 of the first quarter.

In the second quarter the Grizzlies used a Jeremy Calhoun scoring run and a 24-yard touchdown pass to Samori Toure to push the lead to 37-7.

Montana’s defense intercepted three passes and forced a fumble, and the Grizzlies also blocked a punt in the second quarter, setting up three Brandon Purdy field goals. The Grizzlies also turned the ball over on downs at Northern Colorado’s 7-yard line.

Jensen threw a 56-yard scoring strike to Justin Calhoun to open the third quarter, pushing Montana’s lead to 44-7. He completed 17 of 25 passes for 228 yards. He also ran for 30 yards, including a 2-yard scoring run on Montana’s first drive.

Sacramento State 49, Cal Poly 14: Kevin Thomson threw for three touchdowns, including a 76-yard scoring strike to Jaelin Ratliff in the game’s opening drive, to lead the Hornets (6-4, 5-2 Big Sky Conference) over the Mustangs (1-9, 1-6) in San Luis Obispo, California.

Sacramento State had three scoring plays from more than 70 yards out, including a 77-yard return of a blocked field goal by Ernest Jenkins and BJ Perkinson’s 77-yard TD run in the third quarter.

Thomson finished 9-of-16 passing for 247 yards.


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