Cal Poly Football Holds on Late to Defeat North Dakota, 23-19
GRAND FORKS, N.D. – Junior quarterback Andre Broadous threw a pair of touchdown passes and sophomore placekicker James Langford kicked three field goals as Cal Poly overcame an early 6-0 deficit, built a 23-6 lead and held on to beat North Dakota 23-19 in a Great West Conference football game Saturday afternoon inside the Alerus Center.
The Mustang defense intercepted three passes and safety Greg Francis recorded 12 tackles, all solo, and a key pass breakup in the end zone as Cal Poly earned its third straight victory and improved to 4-3 for the season and 2-0 in the Great West.
North Dakota fell to 4-3 and 1-1.
North Dakota jumped to a 6-0 lead on field goals of 18 and 48 yards by Zeb Miller before Cal Poly scored the next 23 points of the game.
Langford kicked field goals spanning 47 and 36 yards to tie the game, Jake Romanelli caught a 38-yard pass from Broadous for a touchdown and Langford's third field goal of the first half, 43 yards, gave the Mustangs a 16-6 halftime lead.
Cal Poly drove 81 yards on nine plays for a touchdown in the third quarter. Broadous hit Akaninyene Umoh with a 35-yard pass for the score and a 23-6 cushion with 9:06 to play.
North Dakota scored the final 13 points of the game on field goals of 28 and 30 yards by Miller and a 21-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Brent Goska to Jake Miller.
North Dakota got the ball back twice in the final five minutes of the game, but Cal Poly forced the Fighting Sioux to turn the ball over on downs on the first drive and linebacker Kennith Jackson intercepted a Goska pass in the final 20 seconds to secure the victory.
Romanelli's streak of 100-yard games rushing ended at four as he netted 93 yards on 24 carries. Broadous completed 12 of 21 passes for 162 yards and his favorite target was redshirt freshman wide receiver Lance Castaneda with five catches for 37 yards.
Francis, Jackson and Angel Morales recorded the interceptions for Cal Poly, which accumulated a 22-20 advantage in first downs but trailed in total offense, 419-384. North Dakota entered the game giving up just 76.4 rushing yards a game, but the Mustangs netted 222 yards on the ground.
North Dakota's Jake Miller rushed for 92 yards on 24 carries while Goska completed 13 of 24 passes for 206 yards and one score after replacing starter Joey Bradley in the second quarter. Bradley connected on just four of 17 passes with two interceptions.
Greg Hardin caught nine passes for 108 yards for the Fighting Sioux.
Cal Poly football, presented by French Hospital Medical Center, will host South Dakota (5-3, 2-0 Great West) next Saturday at 6:05 p.m. in Alex G. Spanos Stadium.
South Dakota defeated UC Davis 27-24 on Saturday night in Vermillion , S.D., setting up a matchup of two unbeaten teams in Great West play next weekend in San Luis Obispo. KSBY-TV will televise the game live beginning with a 5:30 p.m. pregame show.