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NDSU Routs Indiana State in Trees Bowl, 44-2

Published: Oct. 31, 2021 at 7:16 AM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. - The North Dakota State football team improved to 8-0 on the season with a 44-2 victory over Indiana State in the annual Trees Bowl game Saturday, Oct. 30, before a crowd of 14,383 at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.

The victory kept second-ranked North Dakota State atop the Missouri Valley Football Conference with a 5-0 record heading into next week’s Dakota Marker game at South Dakota State. The Jackrabbits (6-2, 3-2 MVFC) beat Youngstown State 47-16.

Kobe Johnson rushed for a career-high 155 yards including a 97-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, which was the longest run from scrimmage in NDSU history. Six different players found the end zone as the Bison rolled up 477 yards of total offense.

Safety Michael Tutsie had a team-high eight tackles and linebacker Jackson Hankey made a goal-line stop on fourth down as the Bison held their opponent out of the end zone for the third time this year. Cornerback Marques Sigle recorded his first career interception.

The Sycamores (4-5, 2-4 MVFC) blocked a punt out of the end zone for a safety in the fourth quarter. Kurtis Wilderman was 13 of 25 passing for 121 yards, Dante Hendrix caught nine passes for 87 yards, and Peterson Kerlegrand carried 18 times for 89 yards.

NDSU started the scoring on its opening drive. Cam Miller connected with tight end Josh Babicz on a 55-yard play across the middle of the field and Babicz capped the seven-play, 72-yard march with a three-yard touchdown reception.

The Bison scored on their first five possessions in opening a 30-0 halftime lead. Jake Reinholz kicked a 43-yard field goal, TaMerik Williams scored on a 27-yard run, and Christian Watson caught an 8-yard TD pass.

Miller finished 10 of 14 passing for 179 yards and three touchdowns, including a 1-yard pass to fullback Hunter Luepke in the third quarter before turning over the reins to freshman Cole Payton, who added an 18-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter.

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