The Missouri State football Bears are 1-1 in their first two conference weekends of the 2019 season.
The Bears picked up their first win of the season in Macomb, Illinois, on Oct. 5 after beating the Western Illinois Leathernecks 37-31 in triple overtime.
Missouri State was down 14-7 entering the fourth quarter but came back for the win as they doubled up Western’s 13 first-downs with 26 of their own.
The Bears’ season-high 429 yards of total offense against the Leathernecks helped lead them to their first overtime victory since 2008.
Senior Peyton Huslig threw for 315 yards and four touchdowns and matched his career high of 28 completions.
Missouri State had three receivers with over 59 yards, including senior Kendall Stewart, who tiptoed down the sideline for a 22-yard sweep into the end zone to clinch the win for the Bears.
The Leathernecks committed two penalties on their final drive of triple overtime with Matt McClellan coming up with a big sack on the final play of the game, ending Western’s comeback.
On Oct. 12, South Dakota handed Missouri State its fourth loss of the season with a dominating 45-10 win.
The Coyotes capitalized on an interception and fumble recovery in the second quarter to score 24 points in under five minutes.
Huslig threw one touchdown for 184 yards and two interceptions. His Coyote counterpart threw four touchdowns for 228 yards.
On the ground, Missouri State picked up 64 yards between six men and allowed the Coyotes 220 yards.
As ugly as the first few games of the season have looked, conference-wise, this is exactly where Missouri State was last year.
The Bears split their first two Valley games of 2018, a win at home over a ranked Illinois State and a loss at South Dakota.
Missouri State is now 1-4 this season, sitting at seventh place in the Valley overall, eighth in offense and last in defense. The Bears were predicted to finish last in the conference overall in the preseason poll.
The Bears will travel to Valley leader No. 1 North Dakota State on Oct. 18.