WAYNE – MSU Moorhead’s Jake Richter caught an 18-yard pass from Jakub Sinani in overtime to lead the Dragons in a 28-22 Northern Sun Conference football victory over Wayne State Saturday afternoon at Bob Cunningham Field in Wayne. WSC drops to 1-6 on the season with the loss while MSU Moorhead is now 5-2.
The Dragons opened the scoring in the first quarter, scoring on their first series with a 33-yard Joe Tjosvold field goal for a 3-0 lead.
After WSC punted on their first two possessions, the Wildcats recorded points on their next three series.
Senior Nate Rogers made a leaping grab in the end zone for a 14-yard scoring pass from Brady Brandsfield, giving WSC a 6-3 lead after a missed PAT kick.
The ‘Cats scored again on a Maliki Wilson 17-yard run, capping an eight-play, 83-yard drive that put the ‘Cats in front 12-3 with 11:45 remaining in the second quarter following a missed two-point pass conversion.
Junior placekicker Ethan Knudson booted a 41-yard field goal on the third straight series resulting in points, taking a 15-3 lead with 5:59 to play in the first half.
MSU Moorhead closed the first half scoring on a Zach Simons one-yard run with 1:55 left before halftime, making the score 15-9 at intermission in favor of the Wildcats.
The lone score of the third quarter was from MSU Moorhead on the opening drive of the half as quarterback Jakup Sinani connected with Zach Sweep on a 21-yard scoring play, giving the Dragons a 16-15 lead.
MSUM increased the lead to 19-15 on a Joe Tjosvold 26-yard field goal with 10:19 to play in the contest.
Midway through the fourth quarter, WSC regained the lead as Rogers hauled in a 16-yard pass from freshman quarterback Alex Thramer, giving the Wildcats a 22-19 lead with 5:02 remaining.
But MSU Moorhead marched down the field late in the quarter and sent the game into overtime thanks to a 25-yard field goal from Tjosvold with 38 seconds to play.
In the overtime session, WSC got the ball first and had a seven-yard touchdown run by Wilson called back on a holding penalty. The next play, Thramer’s pass in the end zone to Mason Lee was intercepted by MSU Moorhead’s Alec Goffard to end the drive.
MSU Moorhead then got the ball in overtime and on the second play scored when Sinani tossed an 18-yard pass to Jake Richter in the right corner of the end zone to give the Dragons the 28-22 overtime victory.
WSC gained 475 yards in the contest (108 rushing and 367 passing) while MSU Moorhead produced 473 yards of offense with 181 on the ground and 292 through the air.
Maliki Wilson led WSC in rushing with 87 yards on 18 carries and one score.
Throwing the ball, Brandsfield completed 11 of 18 passes for 198 yards and one TD while Thramer was 14 of 27 for 169 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
Senior wide receiver Nate Rogers made eight catches for 123 yards and had two TD’s followed by sophomore tight end Conner Paxton with six receptions for 82 yards.
Defensively, junior linebacker Tyler Thomsen had 12 tackles followed by Kevin Ransom with eight.
Wayne State will be on the road next Saturday for a 1 p.m. NSIC contest at Minot State.
MSU MOOREHEAD (5-2) 3 6 7 6 (6) – 28
WAYNE STATE (1-6) 6 9 0 7 (0) – 22