No. 24 Southern Illinois Upends No. 19 North Dakota, 34-17
CARBONDALE, Ill. – No. 24 Southern Illinois (2-2, 1-0 MVFC) upended No. 19 North Dakota (2-2, 1-1 MVFC), 34-17 at Saluki Stadium on Saturday afternoon. In the game, the Salukis outgained the Fighting Hawks in total yardage 458-271.
Tommy Schuster finished the day 19-of-32 for 232 yards. SIU got to Schuster seven times, the most he has been sacked in his career.
Bo Belquist was the top target for UND, with five grabs for 78 yards. Garett Maag was the next most popular receiver for the Hawks, finishing with four catches for 67 yards. Tyler Hoosman picked up 31 yards on the ground on seven touches for two scores, while Isaiah Smith added three rushes for 20 yards. Caden White led the UND defense with nine tackles, eight of them being solo. C.J. Siegel was the next most productive tackler with seven takedowns (five solo, two assisted). For SIU, Nic Baker led the Salukis through the air, going 21-of-27 for 289 yards and four touchdowns. D’Ante’ Cox was the leading receiver with seven grabs for 90 yards and a touchdown. Jacob Garrett found the end zone twice, finishing with five receptions for 78 yards. Richie Haggerty caused problems in the backfield all day, leading the Salukis with two sacks and two QB hurries to go with three tackles.
The SIU defense finished the day with seven sacks. On its first drive, Southern Illinois drove down to the UND 8 and faced third and four. On the next play, Baker found Garrett for the eight-yard touchdown pass to take the early 7-0 lead. On the next Saluki possession, they marched down to the UND 16 but had to settle for a 34-yard field goal from Baumgarte to extend their lead to 10-0. North Dakota began its first drive of the second quarter at its own 34 and worked its way down to the SIU 1. The drive was highlighted by a 21-yard pass to Maag. On the drive, Schuster picked up 19 yards on the ground on four rushes before the second and one play from the one, where Hoosman leaped into the end zone for the one-yard score.Southern Illinois faced third and 9 from its own 33 on the following possession, but Baker found Cox in the open field for the 67-yard touchdown score to extend its lead to 17-7.
North Dakota drove all the way down to the SIU 3 following a 42-yard reception by Belquist but ultimately had to settle for a Brady Stevens 32-yarder to trim the deficit down to 17-10. Before intermission, the Salukis responded, eating up three minutes and 44 seconds of possession, while picking up 75 yards, capped by an eight-yard touchdown reception by Cox. After a missed Southern Illinois field goal early in the third quarter, North Dakota looked to have life. The Fighting Hawks made it down to the SIU 15 and faced fourth and five but were unable to convert.
The next score would come with 23 seconds left in the third quarter when Baker connected with Garrett for a 25-yard score to extend the Saluki lead to 31-10. UND opened the scoring with 11:27 left in the fourth quarter when Hoosman found the end zone on a four-yard rush to cap a 12-play, 75-yard drive and to cut the deficit to 31-17. SIU extended their lead to 34-17 after a 45-yard field goal make from Baumgarte with 7:29 left in the game.
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