MISSOULA – You hear it too often, football is a game of inches. That couldn’t have been more true Saturday evening. The Griz were on the 1-yard line with 14 seconds left, a touchdown would win them the 118th edition of the Cat-Griz rivalry.
But Tucker Yates made a play that is now etched in the history of Cat-Griz, forcing a fumble on the goal line to seal Montana State’s third consecutive win over Montana, 29-25.
“Some of it seems like a little bit of a blur right now, but clearly we talked about it all last week, but last night in particular, about ‘Hey, if you want to be remembered, you make a play in this game,’” said MSU head coach Jeff Choate.
Not only will Yates’ fumble go down in Cat-Griz lore as one of the most exciting finishes in the rivalry, but the entire contest will be the topic of conversation for years to come.
“I think this is a game in general that will be remembered for a long time, for the courage of the young men that fought in it and for the excitement that was provided. And I’m so extremely proud of our defensive unit for getting that stop down there, but you know what, our offense stepped up and did some great things in the second half as well,” said Choate.
Montana State overcame a 22-0 second-quarter deficit to claim its third straight win in the Montana-Montana State rivalry. It’s the first time since 1983-1985 that the Bobcats have beaten Montana three consecutive times.