NATCHITOCHES — Zach Adkins threw a pass into the left corner of the end zone and De’Mard Llorens ran under it to give Northwestern State its first lead with 5:48 remaining as the Demons went on to defeat Sam Houston State 31-27 on Saturday.
On the ensuing drive the Bearkats, trailing by one, had a first down on NSU’s 43 when Tyler Roussel forced a fumble and Imoan Clairborne picked it up, returning it 28 yards to Sam Houston’s 42.
Seven plays later Chris Moore, who had missed two previous attempts, kicked a 30-yard field goal with 1:48 remaining for the final score.
Adkins threw for four touchdowns and 296 yards for Northwestern (4-3, 2-1 Southland).
The Bearkats (3-4, 2-1) jumped ahead 21-7 early in the second quarter as Keshawn Hill, who rushed for 161 yards in the first quarter, scored on runs of 66, 74 and three yards. He finished with 198 yards.
GRAMBLING 63, ARK-PINE BLUFF 39:In Grambling, Jonathan Williams passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more scores, Steve Orisakwe had 2 ½ of Grambling’s eight sacks, and the Tigers beat UAPB.
Williams completed 19 of 27 passes for 377 yards and added 52 yards rushing on eight carries.
Grambling State (5-3, 6-0 Southwestern Athletic Conference) took a 28-18 lead into halftime before scoring the first 21 points of the second half to put the game out of reach.
UAPB (1-5, 0-4) took a 3-0 lead when Tyler Strickland kicked a 31-yard field goal with 6:48 left in the first quarter. Sixteen seconds later, Williams connected with Verlon Hunter for a 73-yard touchdown and Grambling State never trailed again.
Hunter had 111 yards on two receptions, both for scores.
Benjamin Anderson passed for 467 yards and accounted for four touchdowns, but threw a pair of interceptions in the loss.
LAMAR 63, NICHOLLS STATE 21: In Thibodaux, Kade Harrington ran for 123 yards and four touchdowns to lead Lamar over Nicholls State.
Harrington had scoring runs of 19, 8 and 4-yards in the first half as Lamar built a 42-7 lead at the break. Harrington added a 3-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter.
Caleb Berry threw a 59-yard touchdown pass to Mark Roberts, and hit Reggie Begelton for a 4-yard score. Berry was 27 of 32 for 330 yards, and his performance broke John Evans’ school record for career completions, yards passing, and total offense set in 1989.
Carl Harris added 116 yards rushing and a touchdown for Lamar (5-3, 2-2 Southland Conference).
Keenan Canty returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown, and Beaux Hebert and Kalen Henderson threw touchdowns passes to lead Nicholls State (0-8, 0-4).
McNEESE STATE 31, ABILENE CHRISTIAN 20: In Lake Charles, Daniel Sams threw for three touchdowns and 184 yards to lead McNeese State over Abilene Christian.
McNeese State (4-2, 2-1 Southland), which was upset by Sam Houston State 38-22 last week, bounced back to defeat the Wildcats. The Cowboys finished with 507 total yards, rolling up 304 on the ground, while limiting Abilene Christian (4-4, 2-2) to 351 total yards.
Sams finished with 296 total yards, rushing for 112 yards on 13 carries.
Leading 24-6 at the half, the Cowboys had a 31-6 lead in the fourth quarter. Abilene Christian (4-4, 2-2) mounted a come-back as De’Andre Brown scored from the 23 and Parker McKenzie passed to Demarcus Thompson from the 8 to make the score 31-20 with 5:47 remaining. The ensuing onside kick failed, but the Wildcats did get the ball back only to be stopped on fourth down.
LOUISIANA TECH 27 USTA 20: In Ruston, Kenneth Dixon rushed for 121 yards and a touchdown, and Louisiana Tech held on to defeat USTA.
The Bulldogs (4-3, 3-0 Conference USA) outscored the Roadrunners (2-5, 1-2) 21-0 in the third quarter thanks to two big defensive plays by Terrell Pinson to take a 27-10 lead and held on to go 3-0 in conference play for the third time in 25 years as an FBS school.
Quarterback Austin Robinson’s 53-yard scamper for a touchdown was the difference in the first half as USTA took a 10-6 lead. However, Robinson lost 12 yards and fumbled on the Roadrunners’ first series of the second half, with Pinson scooping up the ball and falling into the end zone to put Louisiana Tech ahead 13-10.
Pinson’s interception of Robinson and 35-yard return on the next possession led to Cody Sokol’s 19-yard scoring strike to Sterling Griffin.
MARY HARDIN-BAYLOR 45, LOUISIANA COLLEGE 24: In Belton, Texas, No. 2 Mary Hardin-Baylor built a 24-0 lead in the first quarter to cruise to the American Southwest Conference win over Louisiana College.
Louisiana College quarterback Easton Melancon finished the game with 383 yards passing and three touchdowns on 71 attempts, which is one shy of the school record set by Wes Cooper.
In his two career games against the Crusaders, the sophomore has thrown for 802 yards and seven touchdowns.
The Wildcats (2-4, 0-1) had three receivers go over the 100 yard mark — Farron Jones (11 catches, 115 yards), Ladarius Gardner (7 catches, 103 yards) and Shedrick Davis (6 catches, 110 yards).
Linebacker Landon Henry led the Wildcats with 12 total tackles.