LAKE CHARLES — Sam Houston State moved a step closer the Southland Conference football title with a 38-14 victory over McNeese State in Cowboy Stadium on Saturday.

The No. 7-ranked Bearkats ran their record to 7-0 on the season and to 4-0 in league play, while McNeese fell to 3-4 and to 2-2.

It was only the fourth time for Sam Houston to defeat McNeese in Cowboy Stadium and the first time in nine tries to win at a McNeese homecoming.

Running back Tim Flanders led the Bearkats, rushing for 162 yards and scoring on runs of 7 and 55 yards.

Other scoring for the Bearkats came on a 6-yard run by quarterback Brian Bell, a 41- yard pass from Bell to Trey Diller, a blocked punt recovery in the end zone by Robert Shaw and a 33-yard field goal by Craig Alaniz.

McNeese, which was hurt by three lost fumbles and 13 penalties for 78 yards, got touchdowns from Cody Stroud, one on a 1-yard run and the other on a 32-yard pass to DeVionte’ Edmonson.

The Cowboys fumbled the ball away on their first three possessions. Sam Houston missed a field goal after the first miscue but scored a touchdown after the third.

Sam Houston totaled 379 yards while McNeese had 264.

Stroud completed 19 of 31 passes for 200 yards.

Bell attempted seven passes for Sam Houston and hit on five for 133 yards.