Missouri State 24, Illinois State 21


Darius Joseph blocked a 32-yard field goal as time expired, preserving Missouri State’s victory over Illinois State in the conference opener. Missouri State, holding a 10-point lead, stopped Illinois State on fourth down at the 8-yard line with 5:15 left to play. But the Bears went three-and-out. The Redbirds took advantage as James Robinson caught a short pass, spun his defender and raced for a 43-yard touchdown to pull to 24-21 with 3:15 remaining. The Bears punted again after three plays and Illinois State started its final drive at its 21 with 1:27 to go before marching down the field for a short field goal attempt. Peyton Huslig threw for 232 yards with two interceptions for Missouri State (3-1) and he carried it 17 times for 52 yards and a score. Brady Davis had 226 yards passing and three touchdowns for Illinois State (3-1), ranked 10th in the FCS coaches’ poll.

North Dakota State 21, South Dakota State 17


Easton Stick threw two touchdown passes and ran for a score and North Dakota State, the top-ranked team in the FCS coaches’ poll, rallied for a victory over third-ranked South Dakota State. Stick connected with Ben Ellefson for a 17-yard score and hooked up with Darrius Shepherd for a 41-yard TD in the second quarter to give the Bison (4-0) a 14-7 halftime lead. The Jackrabbits (2-1) grabbed a 17-14 lead by the end of the third quarter on Chase Vinatieri’s 39-yard field goal and a 61-yard TD run by Isaac Wallace. The lead lasted until NDSU’s next possession. Stick engineered an eight-play, 80-yard drive capped by his 5-yard TD run with 13 minutes remaining in the game to give the Bison the lead for good. Stick completed 9 of 20 passes for 182 yards and ran for 63 yards on 15 carries. Wallace rushed for 110 yards on just nine carries for the Jacks. Christion totaled 202 yards on 19-of-29 passing.

South Dakota 31, Southern Illinois 24


Austin Simmons threw for 333 yards and three touchdowns to lead South Dakota.The win marked coach Bob Nielson’s 200th career victory. After Kai Henry’s 1-yard touchdown run put South Dakota (2-2, 1-0) out front 7-0, Sam Straub completed a 10-yard touchdown pass to Nigel Kilby, and later, a 20-yard score to Kilby for a 14-7 lead for the Salukis (1-3, 0-1). Trailing 17-10 at the break, Simmons got hot and threw touchdowns of 9 and 45 yards to Randy Baker and unloaded an 89-yard TD strike to Dakarai Allen to put the Coyotes up 31-17 in the third. Javon Williams scored on 1-yard run with a minute left to play to reduce the deficit, but South Dakota recovered the on-side kick and ran out the clock.

Associated Press