BROOKINGS, S.D. (AP) — Adam Cofield sprinted 71 yards on fourth down for a touchdown with 2½ minutes left and FCS top-ranked North Dakota State claimed its 28th straight victory with a 23-16 win over South Dakota State on Saturday.
The Bison (8-0, 4-0 Missouri Valley Conference) were inches short of a first down when they handed the ball to Cofield, who popped through the line and raced down the right sideline to snap a tie. North Dakota State’s defense did the rest, stopping Pierre Strong for a 1-yard loss and sacking Keaton Heide twice before the Jackrabbits (6-2, 3-1) came up way short on a fourth-and-23 razzle-dazzle play.
Chase Vinatieri kicked the two of his three field goals in the first quarter to give the Jackrabbits the early lead but North Dakota State scored the next 16 points on a Griffin Crosa field goal, a 59-yard run by Ty Brooks and a 6-yard TD pass from Trey Lance to Ben Ellefson.
Heide’s 3-yard TD run tied the game at 16 with 7:22 left in the game.
Strong rushed for 120 yards for South Dakota State.
J’Bore Gibbs, the starting quarterback for the third-ranked Jackrabbits, left the game with an apparent leg injury in the first quarter.