Jacks dominate USD in front of sold out crowd


Joclyn Haven

South Dakota State running back Isaiah Davis carries the ball in a Missouri Valley Football Conference Game against the USD Coyotes Oct. 8.

Marshall Minihan, Sports Reporter

The South Dakota State Jackrabbits beat the University of South Dakota in a 28-3 blowout victory in the second-largest crowd Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium has ever seen.

With 19,332 people in attendance, this game marked only the second time Dykhouse Stadium had ever sold out a game. This was also the 115th meeting between the Jackrabbits and the Coyotes. SDSU now leads the rivalry 56-52-7 after going 0-2 in their last two matchups.

With the win, the Jackrabbits move to 5-1 overall this season and 3-0 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference. The Coyotes are now 1-4 overall and 0-2 in conference play.

USD put the game’s first points on the board on their opening drive after marching the ball 50 yards for a field goal from kicker Eddie Ogamba from 37 yards out to take a 3-0 lead after the first quarter. The Jacks defense would post a shutout the rest of the way.

SDSU scored their first points early in the second quarter following an Cale Reeder interception from USD quarterback Carson Camp.

“They did a good job getting pressure on (Camp), even with their four-man rush and I don’t want to say rattled him, but I think he felt that and as a result, never really got in any kind of rhythm throwing the football,” USD coach Bob Nielson said.

Following the interception, the Jackrabbits drove 80 yards and capped it off with a 28-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Mark Gronowski to Jaxon Janke. They scored again later in the second quarter when Isaiah Davis took the ball 47 yards for a touchdown to put the Jacks up 14-3 at halftime.

At the start of the third quarter, the Jacks added to their lead, with a 5-yard touchdown run from Davis to go up 21-3. SDSU’s final score came early in the fourth quarter when Davis scored his third rushing touchdown of the day, capping off a 15 play, 80 yard drive.

Davis led the SDSU offense with 108 rushing yards on 15 carries along with three touchdowns. He has scored five touchdowns in his last two games. The one-two punch of Davis and Amar Johnson proves more deadly every game, as they combined for 161 yards in the game.

Gronowski threw for 136 yards, going 12 for 20 on the day along with one touchdown and one interception. He also ran for 43 yards as well on nine carries.

Jaxon Janke racked up 76 yards on five targets to lead the team in receiving. Jadon Janke picked up only 16 yards on the day with six targets. Tyler Feldkamp put up 30 yards on receiving on three targets.

For South Dakota, their all-purpose yards leader came from their kick returner Wesley Eliodor who returned two kicks for 84 total yards, nearly scoring a touchdown on one of them for 69 yards. Quarterback Carson Camp struggled throughout the game due to SDSU’s pass rush, finishing only 5-12 along with two interceptions.

“They (defensive line) make my job so easy because you know the quarterback is constantly scrambling around for his life with the d-line so they make our job in the backend way easy so credits to the d-line,” SDSU cornerback Dalys Beanum, who also intercepted Camp, said.

The South Dakota State defense showed its dominance throughout the game by forcing two Camp interceptions, and seven sacks on the day. The Jacks also had 56 tackles throughout the game. Cale Reeder, Jason Freeman, and Adam Bock each had seven tackles to lead the team.

Coyotes running back Travis Theis ran the ball 13 times for 73 yards in the game. Getting the same amount of carries for the coyotes was Shomari Lawrence who ran for 39 yards on the night.

Camp only connected with four receivers the whole game. Carter Bell went for 13 yards in the game, and Javion Phelps put up 17 yards.

“I’m going to enjoy this victory a lot,” Jacks coach John Stiegelmeir said.

SDSU will travel north next week to take on NDSU for the Dakota Marker game Oct. 15 at the Fargodome for a 2:30 p.m. kickoff.