Bison Smother Bucs for 27-3 Win in FCS Quarterfinals

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Published: Dec. 13, 2021 at 10:12 AM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (NDSU Athletics) - North Dakota State limited the nation’s leading rusher to 35 yards and the No. 2-seeded Bison defeated seventh-seeded East Tennessee State 27-3 in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division I Football Championship on Saturday, Dec. 11.

NDSU (12-1) advanced to host No. 3 seed James Madison, which beat sixth-seeded Montana 28-6 on Friday night. The NDSU-JMU game will be rematch of the 2016 semifinal in Fargo, which remains the Bison’s only home loss in 12 FCS postseasons.

ETSU (11-2) managed only 66 net rushing yards with its dual 1,000-yard backs Quay Holmes and Jacob Saylors going for 35 and 34 yards, respectively. Quarterback Tyler Riddell went 16 of 32 passing for 92 yards as NDSU held a 401-165 advantage in total offense.

Safety Michael Tutsie made a team-high six tackles for North Dakota State and had two passes defended. His interception midway through the third quarter set up a Bison touchdown four plays later as NDSU built a 20-0 lead.

East Tennessee State’s only trip into the red zone came on the next possession after recovering their own punt that deflected off a Bison player. ETSU moved to the Bison 18 before a false start, stuffed run and two incompletions forced a 40-yard Tyler Keltner field goal.

TaMerik Williams rushed 15 times for 91 yards and two touchdowns to lead seven Bison ball carriers who combined for 278 yards on the ground and 5.7 yards per carry. Quarterback Cam Miller was 10 of 17 passing for 123 yards with completions to seven different receivers led by tight end Josh Babicz’s three receptions for 49 yards.

A crowd of 11,794 was on hand at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome, where the Bison are now 30-1 in the FCS playoffs

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