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Wayne Nelson / Forum News Service, Published September 28 2013

UND dominated in Big Sky Conference opener

GRAND FORKS – Quarterback DeNarius McGhee – the heart of the Montana State football program – picked up his teammates Saturday, recovering perhaps weeks earlier than expected after suffering a separated throwing shoulder earlier this month.

As a result, the University of North Dakota now will be forced to pick up the pieces of what could be a shattered football season after McGhee and the Bobcats routed UND 63-20 in the Big Sky Conference opener before 8,899 fans at the Alerus Center.

It was one of the worst home losses in UND history, a defeat that left North Dakota searching for an explanation of any kind after the game.

“This is not acceptable,” UND running back Jake Miller said. “This is not us. We have to figure something out.”

And fast.

UND dropped its third straight home game – something that hasn’t happened since 1986. And the 63 points scored by Montana State were the most allowed at home by UND since that same season when Texas A&I-Kingsville blasted North Dakota 67-44 at Memorial Stadium.

“Giving speeches won’t make us play any better; throwing chairs and screaming won’t makes us play any better,” said UND coach Chris Mussman. “It comes from within. How much does football mean to you? That’s what everyone in our locker room has to answer.”

“This definitely hurts,” said Miller.

Montana St. 14 28 14 7 – 63

North Dakota 0 7 7 6 – 20

First Quarter

MtSt – Kirk 7 run (Perez kick), 10:30.

MtSt – Kirk 1 run (Perez kick), 8:10.

Second Quarter

NDAK – J.Miller 14 run (Z.Miller kick), 10:50.

MtSt – Kirk 19 run (Perez kick), 8:08.

MtSt – Kirk 5 run (Perez kick), 3:18.

MtSt – Kirk 25 run (Perez kick), 1:11.

MtSt – Nelson 45 fumble return (Perez kick), :53.

Third Quarter

MtSt – Newell 8 pass from J.Bleskin (Perez kick), 10:45.

NDAK – Jackson 4 pass from Mollberg (Z.Miller kick), 5:43.

MtSt – T.Bleskin 23 pass from J.Bleskin (Perez kick), :25.

Fourth Quarter

NDAK – Hickel 13 fumble return (kick failed), 10:52.

MtSt – B.Davis 11 run (Perez kick), 3:55.

A – 8,899.

MtSt NDAK

First downs 36 16

Rushes-yards 52-315 35-165

Passing 271 85

Comp-Att-Int 22-29-0 8-21-2

Return Yards 33 1

Punts-Avg. 2-37.0 5-46.4

Fumbles-Lost 1-1 2-2

Penalties-Yards 11-90 5-42

Time of Possession 34:42 25:12

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING: Montana St., S.Johnson 13-134, Kirk 12-104, B.Davis 7-51,

Brekke 8-32, Newell 4-22, McGhee 4-20, Team 4-(minus 48). North Dakota,

J.Miller 17-93, Jackson 7-43, Garman 6-32, Mollberg 1-8,

Bartels 4-(minus 11).

PASSING: Montana St., McGhee 13-18-0-194, J.Bleskin 9-11-0-77.

North Dakota, Bartels 6-13-1-62, Mollberg 2-8-1-23.

RECEIVING: Montana St., T.Bleskin 6-147, Ellis 6-29, Dash 3-34,

Newell 2-19, S.Johnson 2-8, Kirk 1-16, Kalfell 1-15, Crockett 1-3.

North Dakota, Townsend 4-40, Golladay 2-36, Jackson 2-9.


Nelson writes for the Grand Forks Herald