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Montana Western rallies to top Montana Tech in battle of top-25 teams

Posted at 4:28 PM, Oct 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-07 00:45:21-04

DILLON — For the second consecutive week, Montana Western rallied from a double-digit fourth quarter deficit. This time, however, the Bulldogs finished the job.

Trailing 19-6 entering the fourth quarter, No. 22 Montana Western scored 26 unanswered points to stun No. 20 Montana Tech, 32-19, in Frontier Conference football action on Saturday afternoon.

A 31-yard field goal by Tyler Padilla and a 3-yard touchdown pass form Tanner Kump to Jed Fike gave the Orediggers a 10-0 lead at halftime. Western scored on the opening possession of the second half on a 1-yard Kylar Prante touchdown run. However, the extra point was blocked a returned by Tech’s Damaree Morris for two points, making the deficit 12-6.

Minutes later, Tech’s special teams stepped up again. AJ Robinson returned a blocked punt 8 yards for a touchdown, pushing the Orediggers’ lead to 19-6.

But Western quarterback Jon Jund calmly brought the Bulldogs back. He found Nate Simkins for an 18-yard touchdown with 11:39 to play to cut the deficit to six. After a bad punt by Tech allowed the Bulldogs to take over deep in Orediggers’ territory, Prante found paydirt again, giving Western a 20-19 lead with just under seven minutes to play.

Denzel Maua intercepted Kump on the ensuing possession, setting up an 8-yard touchdown pass from Jund to Prante. After the two-point conversion was no good, Tech only trailed by seven.

But Riley Martello shut the door on Tech with his 20-yard pick-six with under two minutes to play.

Jund threw for 305 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions. Jed Fike had a huge day for Tech, rushing for 144 yards and a score. Western held the Orediggers to just 263 yards of total offense.

Montana Western improves to 4-1 (4-1 Frontier Conference), while Montana Tech drops to 3-2 (3-2).