BOZEMAN — Troy Andersen and Isaiah Ifanse combined for 331 rushing yards and five touchdowns as Montana State held off Cal Poly 49-42 for a Big Sky Conference football win at Bobcat Stadium on Saturday.
The Bobcats built a 7-0 lead on a 17-yard touchdown pass from Travis Jonsen to Logan Jones, and they would never trail, leading by as many as 28 points early in the third quarter after Ifanse’s third touchdown of the game. Cal Poly made things interesting with Khaleel Jenkins scoring three fourth-quarter touchdowns, but MSU held on for the win to snap its two-game losing streak and improve to 5-4 overall and 3-3 in the Big Sky.
TURNING POINT: Andersen’s 49-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter. Cal Poly had cut the lead to two scores and put MSU in a third-down situation. On 3rd-and-4, though, Andersen broke free for a 49-yard touchdown to push the Bobcat lead back to 49-28 with 7:16 to play, giving MSU a 21-point cushion.
STAT OF THE GAME: 9.8 yards per carry. While neither team had much trouble running the football, the Bobcats were dominant with their run game, totaling 430 yards on 44 carries. Andersen had 104 yards and two touchdowns on just seven carries and Ifanse had 227 yards and three touchdowns on 22 totes, as both averaged more than 10 yards per carry.
GAME BALLS: The Montana State offensive line. When the rushing attack has the success MSU did on Saturday, it starts with the guys up front. The Bobcats had more than 500 yards of offense, and the line allowed just one sack.
WHAT’S NEXT: Montana State stays in the friendly confines of Bobcat Stadium, hosting Northern Colorado at 1 p.m. on Nov. 10. The Bobcats are 4-1 at home this season, while Northern Colorado is just 2-8 and is coming off a 48-13 loss to Eastern Washington.