Indiana State fell to the top-ranked North Dakota State Bison by the score of 56-10 in front of 5,009 fans inside Memorial Stadium today (Oct. 26).
The Sycamores dropped to 1-7, 0-4 MVFC while North Dakota State improved to 8-0, 5-0 MVFC.
Indiana State fell behind 21-0 as NDSU's Brock Jensen connected with Zach Vraa on an 11-yard TD pass on their first drive and then found Vraa again late in the first quarter for a 29-yard score while Colten Heagle had a 35-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Eric Heidorn booted a 40-yard field goal with 14:12 remaining in the second quarter to inch ISU within 21-3. Heidorn's field goal capped a six-play, 48-yard drive which was set up by a Jensen fumble on an attempted backwards pass which was recovered by Mark Sewall as well as a 37-yard rush by Buck Logan.
After Jensen found Ryan Smith on a 20-yard touchdown pass with 11:30 on the clock for a 28-3 Bison advantage, LeMonte Booker found pay dirt on the ensuing kickoff with a 97-yard touchdown return just 14 seconds later to get ISU within 28-10. Booker's 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown was the first for the Sycamores since Tanner Riley had one last season against Missouri State and the longest since a similar return by Cornell Johnson against Western Illinois in 2005.
The Bison answered with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Ryan Smith 13 seconds later to stretch the lead out to 35-10 and Jensen recorded his fourth passing touchdown of the day with a three-yard strike to Trevor Gebhart at the 2:21 mark of the second quarter for a 42-10 advantage.
With 1:18 left in the first half, Christian Dudzik had a 43-yard punt return for a touchdown for a 49-10 North Dakota State lead and he added a 68-yard punt return for a score with 9:09 remaining in the third quarter for the 56-10 advantage.
Buck Logan led all rushers with 76 yards on the ground on 15 attempts, averaging 5.1 yards per carry. Tanner Riley had a pair of pass receptions for 20 yards on the day.
Russell Jones led the Sycamore defense with nine tackles, including one for a loss and two forced fumbles. Mark Sewall and George Stone each had fumble recoveries for the Sycamore defense. Connor Underwood, Tyshon Waller and Carlos Aviles each had one tackle for loss in the contest.
Indiana State now hits the road to take on Missouri State Saturday, November 2 at 2:00 p.m. (ET). ISU also plays at South Dakota State on November 9 before returning home for its final two games on November 16 against Western Illinois and November 23 versus Southern Illinois.