POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — Quarterbacks Jordan Cooke and Hunter Hays each led a key second-half touchdown drive, Matthew Sanchez had two interceptions, and Idaho State defeated Northern Colorado 35-21 on Saturday in a Big Sky Conference opener.
Idaho State led 21-7 at halftime before Northern Colorado scored twice in the third quarter to tie it up. Cooke then led a 6-play, 75-yard drive that ended with an 8-yard touchdown run by Aiden Taylor. Midway through the fourth quarter, Hays led a 12-play, 58-yard touchdown drive, his 2-yard keeper giving the Bengals a two-touchdown lead with five minutes left.
Idaho State's Sanchez intercepted Jacob Sirmon passes on Northern Colorado's remaining two possessions, sealing the win for the Bengals.
Cooke completed 14 of 23 passes for 218 yards with a touchdown and an interception for the Bengals (1-3). Hays was 10-of-17 passing for 76 yards with a touchdown and led ISU with 55 yards rushing.
Darius Stewart had 124 yards rushing and David Afari added 108 yards as the Bears (0-4) piled up 240 yards rushing. Sirmon was 22 of 32 for 123 yards with the two late interceptions.
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