No. 7 Missouri State football drops third straight in poor performance at North Dakota

A poor defensive performance from Missouri State has the Bears coming back to Springfield on a three-game losing streak.

Missouri State (2-3, 0-2) couldn't do anything to slow down North Dakota (3-2, 1-1) in a 48-31 loss on Saturday afternoon in Grand Forks, North Dakota.

The Bears' defense gave up over 500 yards of offense for the third time under third-year head coach Bobby Petrino and it was the first time it's allowed that many to an FCS opponent. The Bears, who held a 21-20 lead at halftime, were outscored 28-10 in the final 30 minutes and didn't get a defensive stop in the entire second half.

The Bears were ranked as high as No. 7 in the country heading into the tough road environment. They certainly won't be ranked near as high when updated polls are released on Monday morning.

More:Why there is reason to panic after Missouri State football's blowout loss at North Dakota

Missouri State's tough stretch of games will continue at Plaster Stadium on Oct. 8 when the Bears host Southern Illinois at 2 p.m.

The Bears led by as many as 11 when they had a 21-10 lead with 2:36 to go in the first half. They had solid play from starting running back Jacardia Wright and Jason Shelley through the first two quarters and took advantage of a Von Young interception before halftime before Trae Thompson punched in a two-yard score for the lead.

That's when the wheels started to fall off the bus for the Bears' defense which allowed the Fighting Hawks to go 70 yards over two plays with Tommy Schuster connecting with Garett Maag for a 38-yard touchdown to bring it back within four. UND capitalized off of a Missouri State three-and-out and a pair of defensive mental mistakes to boot in a field goal right before the half.

The second half looked like it was going to start perfectly for the Bears. A pooch kick on the opening kickoff hit the ground with the Bears recovering at the UND 29. The Bears followed by going three-and-out with Pizano missing a 38-yard field goal, his second miss of the game, to keep the score at 21-20.

On the fourth play following the missed field goal, UND tailback Tyler Hoosman found space on a run up the middle for a 55-yard touchdown run. A failed two-point conversion gave the Fighting Hawks a 26-21 lead early in the third.

After a Bears three-and-out, the Fighting Hawks struck again with a seven-plus minute drive that resulted in UND power-running backup quarterback Quincy Vaughn punching in his second touchdown of the game from inside the Bears' five.

A later Isaiah Smith 54-yard touchdown run and an 18-yard touchdown pass from Schuster to Maag made the score 48-24 in the final minutes. The Bears scored a garbage-time touchdown for the game to end at 48-31.

North Dakota rushed for 248 total yards while throwing for 267. Schuster completed two touchdowns to Maag who finished the game with five catches for 104 yards. Hoosman rushed for 147 yards with Smith going for 78.

Missouri State had 271 passing yards from Shelley with three touchdowns. Two of his scores went to Naveon Mitchell and the other going to Kevon Latulas. Wright rushed for 97 yards on the ground as the Bears finished with 118 net rushing yards.

Scoring summary

  • 1Q 13:02 - Shelley 11-yard touchdown pass to Mitchell. MSU 7-0.

  • 1Q 6:55 - Stevens 42-yard field goal. MSU 7-3.

  • 2Q 8:30 - Vaughn three-yard touchdown run. UND 10-7.

  • 2Q 4:15 - Shelley two-yard touchdown pass to Latulas. MSU 14-10.

  • 2Q 2:36 - Thompson two-yard touchdown run. MSU 21-10.

  • 2Q 2:06 - Schuster 38-yard touchdown pass to Maag. MSU 21-17.

  • 2Q 0:00 - Stevens 35-yard field goal. MSU 21-20.

  • 3Q 11:40 - Hoosman 55-yard touchdown run. UND 26-21.

  • 3Q 2:10 - Vaughn two-yard touchdown run. UND 34-21.

  • 4Q 14:15 - Pizano 32-yard field goal. UND 34-24.

  • 4Q 11:02 - Smith 54-yard touchdown run. UND 41-24.

  • 4Q 4:02 - Schuster 18-yard touchdown pass to Maag. UND 48-24.

  • 4Q 1:43 - Shelley nine-yard touchdown pass to Mitchell. UND 48-31.

Wyatt D. Wheeler is a reporter and columnist with the Springfield News-Leader. You can contact him at 417-371-6987, by email at or Twitter at @WyattWheeler_NL. He's also the co-host of Sports Talk on Jock Radio weekdays from 4-6 p.m.

This article originally appeared on Springfield News-Leader: Missouri State football blown out at North Dakota