BUTTE — Darius-James Peterson had a hand in three touchdowns to help College of Idaho earn a 23-20 overtime win over Montana Tech at Alumni Coliseum on Saturday.
The Yotes struck quickly in the first quarter as Peterson connected with Keegan Crafton for a 70-yard touchdown on COI’s first offensive play of the game. The long touchdown gave the Yotes a 7-3 lead less than two minutes into the game, and they would add a 24-yard field goal from Kyle Mitchell to grow the lead to 10-3 by the end of the first quarter.
Tech answered on the first play of the second quarter, though, as Cole Hauptman hit Dion Williams for a 31-yard touchdown to tie the game at 10. The score was Williams’ 20th career receiving touchdown, which ties the all-time record at Tech. Williams finished the game with six catches, which gave him the career receptions mark, as well. Williams now has 169 career catches.
Peterson worked his magic later in the second quarter, eluding multiple Tech defenders to buy enough time to throw a short touchdown pass to Connor Richardson. The Yotes would take a 17-10 lead into the break. Both defenses stood tall in the third, taking the 17-10 score into the fourth quarter, as well.
The Orediggers were seemingly on the ropes in the fourth after apparently muffing a punt, which COI recovered with 1:24 remaining. The officials ruled catch interference, though, and the Yotes were also flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct. The two penalties resulted in 30 yards for Tech, which took over at the COI 34-yard line. Five plays later, Jed Fike ran untouched up the middle for a 20-yard touchdown to tie the game and force overtime.
The COI defense held Tech to a field goal — a 26-yarder from Padilla — to start overtime play. With the Yotes’ offense on the field, Peterson called his own number on a 3rd-and-5 play from the 8-yard line and sprinted across the goal line for the game-winning touchdown. Peterson finished the game completing 12 of 24 passes for 233 yards and two touchdowns. He added 36 rushing yards and the one score on 21 carries.
Nick Calzaretta totaled 111 rushing yards on 16 carries for COI.
Tech was led by Fike’s 144 rushing yards on 33 carries. Hauptman had 105 rushing yards on 12 carries to go along with 134 passing yards.
COI, which started the season with five consecutive losses, has now won two consecutive games. The Yotes are 2-5 overall and 2-4 in the Frontier Conference. Tech, meanwhile, has now lost two straight and is 3-3 overall and 3-3 in the conference.
Tech next travels to La Grande, Ore., to face Eastern Oregon on Oct. 20. COI is back home in Caldwell, Idaho, against Southern Oregon.