FARGO, N.D. – A total tem effort across the board, offense, defense and special teams led South Dakota to a 24-19 upset of No. 2 North Dakota State in a Missouri Valley Football Conference opener for both teams on Saturday inside the Fargo Dome.
The Coyotes scored three first half touchdowns and raced out to a 21-3 lead at halftime and held on in the second half to post their second win in Fargo since 2015.
South Dakota, moving to 3-1 on the season, forced North Dakota State to its first turnover of the season and despite getting outgained offensively 348-269, won for the fifth time in its last seven MVFC openers.
The Bison had won 12 consecutive MVFC openers and falls to 3-1 on the season.
Bell caught five passes for 124 yards and had touchdown receptions of 50 yards to open the scoring in the first quarter and 52 yards shortly before halftime that made it 21-3.
Keyondray Jones had a five-yard touchdown run in the second quarter as South Dakota’s efficient offense scored on its first three possessions and four of six total in the game, not counting the final kneel down after recovering an onside kick attempt by the Bison.
South Dakota returns to the DakotaDome on Saturday, Oct. 7 for the annual Dakota Days contest against MVFC newcomer Murray State.