South Dakota Takes Commanding 21-3 Lead Over Bears Into Break
Andrew Beisel
Andrew Beisel

Oct. 13, 2012

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - South Dakota racked up 265 yards of offense in building a 21-3 halftime lead over the Missouri State Bears in Missouri Valley Football Conference action Saturday afternoon at Plaster Field.

Coyotes' quarterback Josh Vander Maten accounted for 197 yards of total offense, including 80 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns, to lead USD's charge. The Coyotes dominated most offensive categories, including first downs gained (17 to 5) and time of possession (22:16 to 7:44).

South Dakota took control of the game on their first possession of the afternoon, getting a two-yard touchdown plunge from Marcus Sims to cap a 10-play, 75-yard drive for a 7-0 lead. The Bears shot themselves in the foot with a barrage of penalties early in the contest, including a key defensive pass interference call that kept the Coyotes' opening drive alive after the MSU defense appeared to have stopped the USD offense to force a fourth down near midfield. Coyotes' quarterback Josh Vander Maten took full advantage of the opportunity and hooked up with Terrence Terry for completions of 13 and 11 yards to take the ball to the 2-yard line before Sims would walk into the end zone for the first points of the afternoon.

After a three-and-out for the Bears' offense, the Coyotes went right back to work with their second scoring drive of more than four minutes to take a commanding 14-point advantage. USD kept the ball on the ground for seven of the eight plays on the drive and benefitted from another costly MSU penalty to build its double-digit lead. Vander Maten appeared to have taken a sack on the first play of the possession, but Anthony Grady was flagged 15 yards for a facemask to negate the play. The visitors proceeded to march 54 yards to pay dirt--all on the ground--with Vander Maten taking it in from 12 yards out for the score with 4:44 to play in the first quarter.

The Bears offense got into the act late in the opening period, as Harris scampered for 12 yards, then drove MSU to the Coyote 18-yard line with back-to-back completions of 15 and 11 yards to Cadarrius Dotson and Matt Thayer, respectively. Another personal foul penalty stalled the drive, however, and the Bears settled for a career-long 47-yard field goal by Austin Witmer to break into the scoring column at the 1:26 mark in the period.



Vander Maten made a pair of key plays on the Coyotes' final drive of the opening half, escaping MSU defenders on two separate plays before connecting through the air for long gains. The sophomore signal-caller then carried it in from the one with just 0:26 left on the clock to stretch the visitor's lead to 21-3.

Vander Maten completed 9-of-13 passes for 117 yards through the air and rushed 13 times, while Sims carried the ball 66 yards on 16 carries in the half.

Missouri State struggled to generate a consistent offensive effort, finishing with just 65 yards of total offense while committing eight penalties for 75 yards in the half. The Bears rushed for just seven yards on nine carries, and Harris completed 6-of-12 passes for 58 yards.

The Bears' defense got a boost from the tandem of Andrew Beisel and Nate Davis, who combined for 14 tackles in the half. Beisel made eight stops, while Davis added six tackles and a sack.

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