by Spencer Rodak
The No. 17/23 SUU football team picked up its fifth consecutive victory on Saturday night at Eccles Coliseum, knocking off North Dakota 47-21.
The Thunderbirds (7-2, 5-1 BSC) got on the board first, scoring via a James Felila 1-yard run just five minutes into the game, taking a 7-0 lead.
SUU added to the lead on its next possession, when an 89-yard drive was capped off by a 1-yard Jay Green Jr. run into the end zone. The Thunderbirds elected to go for two on the next play but were unsuccessful, still adding six to the lead and making the score 13-0.
North Dakota (3-7, 2-5 BSC) was able to score before the quarter ended, when John Santiago broke off a 63-yard touchdown run, cutting the lead to 13-7.
SUU scored again just two minutes into the second quarter, when Jay Green Jr. broke across the goal line from three yards out, his second touchdown of the game, giving the Thunderbirds a 20-7 lead.
The Fighting Hawks were able to answer just three minutes later, cutting the lead to 20-14.
SUU added one more score in the first half, when with just over seven minutes to go, Patrick Tyler found Alex Croyle from 13 yards out for the touchdown, giving the Thunderbirds a 27-14 lead they took into halftime.
North Dakota scored first in the second half, courtesy of an 18-yard touchdown catch by Noah Wanzek, again cutting SUU’s lead to 6, 27-21.
The Thunderbirds answered with nine minutes left in the third quarter, when Jay Green Jr. scored his third touchdown of the game, this time a 5-yard run, that gave SUU a 34-21 lead.
SUU added to its lead at the end of the third period, via a Terran Beasley 51-yard run for a touchdown, extending the lead to 40-21 after a missed two-point try.
The Thunderbirds capped off the rout when Alex Croyle caught his second touchdown pass of the game from Patrick Tyler, this time from 24 yards, giving SUU a 47-21 lead, which would hold until the final whistle.
Patrick Tyler led the Thunderbirds offense through the air, completing 30 of 46 passes for 310 yards and two touchdowns.
Alex Croyle had four catches for 83 yards and two scores on the receiving end of Tyler’s throws.
Jay Green Jr. led SUU on the ground, carrying the ball 14 times for 62 yards and adding three touchdowns.
The Thunderbirds will seek their sixth straight win on Saturday, November 11, when they will travel to UC Davis. Kickoff is slated for 5 p.m. The game can be viewed on Pluto TV channel 245, as well as heard on the radio on KSUB 590 AM.