Bobcats Fall to Portland State in Big Sky Conference Game - News, Sports and Weather

Bobcats Fall to Portland State in Big Sky Conference Game

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Courtesy: Montana State Sports Information

There was no stopping the Vikings.
Riding its highest national ranking in many years, 17th-ranked Portland State topped #16 Montana State 59-42 in Providence Park on Saturday. PSU gained 682 total yards, including a school-record 465 on the ground.
"First of all you tip your hat to Portland State," said Montana State coach Rob Ash. "I thought they executed very well. They got on point offensively and were very tough."
Portland State scored touchdowns on the team's first eight possessions, with MSU's only stop a fumbled forced by Mac Bignell and recovered by Tucker Yates. The Vikings kicked a field goal late in the game, and punted in the game's final minute.
The Vikings' league-leading allowed its most yards in a game this season, and nearly as many points as the first five opponents combined (57), but MSU quarterback Dakota Prukop credited the Vikings with an excellent effort. "They played a lot more man than we thought (they would)," MSU's junior quarterback said. "Hats off to them, they did a good job."
Vikings running back David Jones gained 285 yards Saturday, the first 200-yard effort against MSU since Danny Woodhead in 2006. He set the tone on PSU's first play, dashing 79 yards for a touchdown. He scored three touchdowns in a career-best effort. Alex Kuresa completed 10 of his 14 passes for 217 yards.
The first-half proceedings resembled a track meet early. Montana State scored on its third play – a 61-yard Dakota Prukop run – and Portland State answered on its first – a 79-yard David Jones run. In fact, both teams scored on their first two possessions.
The Vikings, though, changed the game on the fifth possession of the afternoon. After a quick Prukop-to-Newell 21-yard pass, a short run and a pair of incompletions forced an MSU punt. The Vikings scored on a nine-play drive, then for good measure forced a three-and-out on the next Bobcat possession and used a 75-yard drive to take a 28-14 lead. The teams traded touchdowns late in the half, and PSU held a 35-21 halftime lead.
The Vikings gashed MSU for 20 first downs in the first half, rushing for 240 yards before intermission. Jones fueled the PSU offense, rushing for 146 yards on 11 carries in the first two quarters. Alex Kuresa threw almost flawlessly, hitting on eight of his nine passes for 153 yards.
Montana State was not without exceptional individual efforts. Prukop gained 102 yards on the ground, his second 100-yard game of the season, and rushed for three touchdowns. He also threw for 211 yards and a touchdown. Chad Newell rushed for 59 yards and caught four passes for 70 yards.
Jones' long return was one of the shining moments of the afternoon for MSU. His was the fifth 100-yard return in school history, the first since Shawn Johnson did so against NAU in 2013.
Montana State falls to 3-3 on the season, 2-2 in Big Sky play. The Vikings now stand 5-1 overall, 2-1 in Big Sky play. The Bobcats host East Tennessee State in non-conference action Saturday.

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