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Bobcats bounce back for homecoming

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BOZEMAN – Scores came from as many directions as the cold autumn wind swirling around Bobcat Stadium on Sept. 27. Montana State University quarterback Dakota Prukop continued his stellar play this season, leading the Bobcat football team past the University of North Dakota 29-18 in their Big Sky Conference opener.

The No. 13 Bobcats were coming off a heartbreaking 52-51 home loss the previous week to the nation’s No. 2-ranked Eastern Washington. Instead of the aerial passing onslaught MSU used against the Eagles, the Bobcats used contributions from various players to hang points on the board against UND.

Freshman defensive back Khari Garcia returned an interception for a touchdown and Bobcat kicker Luke Daly kicked three field goals in the strong wind, earning Big Sky Conference Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts. Prukop finished 17 of 24 with 269 passing yards and a touchdown.

UND cut the lead to 11 points late in the game on a touchdown pass from quarterback Joe Mollberg, but it proved too little, too late. North Dakota came into the game with the second-ranked defense in the Big Sky Conference, and held the Bobcats to under 500 yards of total offense for the first time in a month.

MSU plays on the road in California the next two weeks at conference foes Sacramento State University and University of California-Davis. The Bobcats return home to Bozeman Oct. 18 to take on Weber State. – E.J. Daws

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