North Dakota falls at No. 9 Washington 45-3

SEATTLE (UND Athletics) -- Visiting North Dakota trailed just 24-3 through three quarters Saturday at Washington, but the ninth-ranked Huskies scored 21 fourth-quarter points to etch a 45-3 win.

UND senior running back John Santiago piled up 260 yards of all-purpose yardage to move up the North Dakota record books. He totaled 136 yards rushing and added 100 yards of kick return yardage and had a highlight-reel 17-yard catch to help him move into second place at UND with 5,960 all-purpose yards. His rushing total moves to 3,389, good for third among all UND ball carriers.

In the second quarter, after the defense snuffed out back-to-back plays on 3rd- and 4th-and-1, Santiago got into his groove. The senior scampered for a 10-yard gain on 3rd and long, then collected 14 more yards combined on his next three rushes as North Dakota worked its way across midfield and into Washington territory.

UND was forced to punt, however, and the drive stalled, allowing Washington to regain possession. The Huskies then drove 87 yards on nine plays for a 17-0 advantage.

Santiago then showed off his skills in other areas with a 25-yard kickoff return setting up a nifty 17-yard reception that saw him juke a few Huskies and leap another. Again, though, the drive stalled just past midfield as UND's fourth-down attempt came up inches shy.

After the teams traded punts, Hayden Galvin intercepted Jake Browning with under two minutes to go, giving the Fighting Hawks an opportunity at a final push before halftime.

Nate Ketteringham then completed five straight passes and then Santiago moved a pile 11 yards on the ground for a first down at the 26. In that stretch, Ketteringham found Noah Wanzek for six and then 11 yards, followed by a three and four-yard completions to Travis Toivonen to setup a big 3rd-and-3 at the Washington 39 with 42 seconds to go in the stanza. Toivonen moved the chains on a three-yard catch with Santiago's run getting it down to the 26. Brady Leach's 43-yard field goal attempt was short and the teams went into the halftime locker room with the home team up, 17-0.

In the second half, North Dakota forced a pair of punts before putting together its first scoring drive. On 3rd-and-6 from the UND 14, Santiago found a seam up the middle and raced 69 yards to the Washington 14. Santiago then followed that with another 10-yard scamper as North Dakota knocked on the doorstep. Brady Leach converted from 20 yards out for his first collegiate field goal and the Fighting Hawks were on the board, 17-3.

Washington (1-1) stormed back with a scoring drive of its own, using a 31-yard kickoff return to fuel a nine-play, 48-yard drive that culminated in a 1-yard touchdown pass from Browning to Cade Otton for a 24-3 advantage.

Hayden Blubaugh picked off Browning later in the frame, giving UND the ball near midfield. North Dakota went three-and-out and the third quarter closed with the heavily-favored Huskies with just a three-score lead. From there, however, UW scored 21 points in a decisive final frame to post the 45-3 win.

North Dakota will play another ranked opponent next week, heading to Sam Houston State to battle the FCS' fourth-ranked team. Kickoff is set for 6:00 p.m. Central on WDAY/Z Xtra and the KX Network across the state.

*North Dakota is 1-10 all-time against FBS opponents
*UND has future FBS matchups against: Kansas State (2020), Utah State (2021), Nebraska (2022, 2026), Iowa State (2024) and Missouri (2025).
*Washington, ranked No. 9 in the Associated Press poll, represented the highest-ranked FBS opponent in UND's history.
*Santiago has now rushed for 100-plus yards in three of his games against FBS opponents.
*Santiago's 69-yard rush in the third quarter was the fourth-longest rush of his career and the seventh of 50 yards or more in his standout career.
*Santiago (3,389) moved into second place on UND's all-time rushing list, passing Bill Deutsch (3,345).
*He also gained 260 in all-purpose yardage (5,960) to move past Phillip Moore (5,586) into second place on the school's career list.
*Warren Taylor made his collegiate debut, booting a 42-yard punt in the third quarter without a return.
*Brady Leach converted a 20-yard field goal in the 3rd quarter (20 yards) for his first career make.

Santiago vs. FBS schools
2018 18-139 at Washington
2017 10-20 at Utah
2016 18-119 at BGSU
2015 24-148 at Wyoming
TOTAL 70-426