MOORHEAD, Minn. - One year and 12 days is the amount of time that had elapsed since Minot State's last victory on the road.
The Beavers ended their road drought with a 31-10 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference victory over Minnesota State-Moorhead on Saturday at Alex Nemzek Stadium.
The win also marked Minot State's first ever road win as a member of the NSIC.
Minot State University senior running back Blake Eggl carries the ball in front of junior offensive lineman Admir Mujakovic (74) during the Beavers’ game Saturday at Minnesota State University-Moorhead. Photo courtesy of Michael Linnell/MSU sports information.
"Winning one and coming home on a bus is going to feel good," Minot State coach Paul Rudolph said.
Minot State's last road win was a 38-7 decision over South Dakota School of Mines on Oct. 15, 2011 in Rapid City, S.D.
Both teams struggled with turnovers in the game. MSUM (1-8) lost two fumbles and had two passes intercepted. Minot State fumbled the ball four times - losing two to the Dragons - and also had one pass intercepted.
The Beavers (3-6) jumped out to an early 10-0 lead, scoring their first points of the game on an Aaron LaDeaux 23-yard field goal. That score was set up by an interception by Beavers linebacker Chad Marshall, who picked off a pass by MSUM freshmen quarterback Jake Hodge on the game's first play from scrimmage.
Minot State junior Glyn Borel scored on a 23-yard run on the Beavers' second drive of the game.
"I think our poor start that was difficult for us to overcome," MSUM head coach Steve Laqua said. "They took advantage of that and were able to put points on the board, where with their miscues they weathered the storm. We didn't capitalize on their turnovers and answer back. That was the difference.
"Both teams made mistakes, but one team capitalized on the miscues and the other did not."
MSUM's Wes Kramer connected for a 36-yard field goal in the second quarter.
Minot State answered with a 17-play drive that ended without a score after LaDeaux had a 22-yard field goal blocked.
The second half opened with the Beavers executing an eight-play, 52-yard scoring drive capped off by a 1-yard touchdown rush by quarterback Zac Cunha.
"Getting points right away helps," Rudolph said. "We controlled the football. We mixed and matched well that first drive of the second half."
MSUM would answer with an eight-play scoring drive of its own. This time the Dragons scored on a 14-yard touchdown run by Brandon Schell.
"I certainly thought getting the offense in some kind of a rhythm was encouraging in the second half," Laqua said. "We just were not able to sustain that. We were too inconsistent in our execution."
Freshman running back Randel Barber scored the Beavers final two touchdowns on runs of 1 and 17 yards. Barber finished with 93 yards on 15 carries.
After MSUM's third quarter touchdown, its final four drives end on two punts, a lost fumble and an interception.
Hodge was 15-of-22 passing for 132 yards and Schell rushed for 49 yards on eight carries to lead MSUM.