College Sporting News
VERMILLION, S.D. -- Today, I took my two sons to see defending national champions Eagles play South Dakota and we got to see an upset on the DakotaDome astroturf.
USD QB Dante Warren (8 of 15 for 126 yards and an interception and TD) had a rushing and passing touchdown and kicker Kevin Robb had three field goals (perfect on the night adding 3 PATs and 7 kickoffs for 12 points) as the Coyotes upset the Eagles 30-17 for their first-ever win over a No. 1-ranked team since moving to Division I FCS.
The Coyotes took a 21-0 lead in the second quarter before EWU finally scored. Warren scored on a 2-yard run and threw a 48-yard touchdown pass to Jeremy Blount.
Jim Thompson added a 67-yard interception return to give the Coyotes a 21-0 lead.
A Matt Johnson interception gave EWU the ball back right before halftime.
Eagle QB Bo Levi Mitchell (38 of 60 for 369 yards and a pair of interceptions and TDs)then completed 9-of-12 passes for the entire 72-yard drive, capped by a 2-yard touchdown pass to Nicholas Edwards (13 catches for 138 yards) as the game went into halftime with USD holding a 21-7 advantage.
EWU took the opening second half drive to the Coyote 4 yard line but had to settle for a 21-yard Mike Jarrett field goal to pull the Eagles within 21-10.
On its next possession, South Dakota converted a third-and-20 and a fourth and 3 with runs of 17 and 14 yards by Warren respectively that set up the first field goal by Robb.
EWU scored on a quick, four-play, 72-yard drive that cut the lead to 24-17 as the third quarter ended. Mitchell found Greg Herd from 27-yards out for the score.
After another USD field goal, EWU drove deep into USD territory, only to have Marquis Butler (who also had 9 tackles on the night) make an impressive over-the-shoulder interception and returned it 66 yards back into Eagle territory. Another field goal gave the Coyotes a 30-17 lead.
Eastern once again put together a drive, but a holding call on the Eagles resulted on a failed fourth-down attempt with 2:06 left and sealed the game.
It's not uncommon for South Dakota to pull off an upset as it defeated FBS Minnesota 41-38 a year ago. Consistency, however, was a concern as the Coyotes ended up finishing just 4-7 overall and 1-3 in the GWC play.
Senior RB Chris Ganious had 85 yards rushing on 15 carries to lead the USD ground game which tallied 198 yards.
Senior LB Adam Broders had a game-high 15 tackles for the Coyotes, while senior LB Shea Williams added 10 stops and sophomore Tyler Starr had two sacks while holding the Eagles to 11 yards rushing.
EWU now at 0-2 overall will not have an easy time to get its first win must play at Montana next week. The 1-1 Coyotes return Saturday, Sept. 17 at home against Northwestern Oklahoma State.for their Hall of Fame Day.