Many Positives for Bengals in Opening Game
Story by Steve Schaack-ISU Media Relations
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.- Kevin Yost threw for 355 yards and two touchdowns and Derek Graves caught 15 passes for 118 yards in the season opener for Idaho State on Saturday afternoon at Falcon Stadium in front of a crowd of 35,282. The Bengals lost 49-21 but scored 14 points in the third quarter and added a touchdown in the fourth.
Idaho State tallied 431 yards of total offense with 365 yards coming in the air. The Bengals had 66 yards rushing led by freshman Xavier Finney who had 18 carries for 48 yards and one touchdown.
Cam Richmond caught eight passes for 90 yards while Hill caught eight passes for 55 yards and two touchdowns. Luke Austin caught six passes for 67 yards and Finney caught five passes for 35 yards.
Defensively, Mitch Beckstead led Idaho State with 10 tackles while Tanner Davis had eight and Jake Pele seven.
Air Force had 626 yards of total offense with 484 yards coming on the ground. Cody Getz carried the ball 17 times for 218 yards and three touchdowns.
Both teams missed field goals on their opening possessions of the game. AFA then scored four touchdowns to lead 28-0 at halftime.
Idaho State came out and took the opening drive 75 yards on 13 plays and Yost hit Hill on a five-yard reception in the end zone.
The Falcons followed with a touchdown and ISU came back and once again marched 75-yards on 13 plays and hit Josh Hill on a nine-yard touchdown pass in the end zone to cut the AFA lead to 35-14.
Air Force once again scored another touchdown to extend the lead to 42-14. The Bengals then marched 75-yards on 10 plays and Finney scored his first-career touchdown on a two-yard run.
Idaho State returns to the field on Saturday, September 8 for the home opener against Black Hills State.Mike Kramer Quotes
“I thought we would give up a lot of yards rushing and we did. I thought we would give up some big plays on the perimeter and we did. It is about winning and we did not win.”
“In what we saw today we saw a quarterback who was excellent in going 41-for-52 and we saw an offensive line that solved one of its major dilemmas on the interior offensive line. Don Bailey, our offensive coordinator, called an outstanding game and gave us an opportunity to be in the game.”
“I liked the way Jake Pele and Demetrius Allen played inside and I liked Austin Graves in the middle of our defense. I wish our corners would have supported the run a little bit better. Those are two senior corners and they have to support the run a lot better.
I think everybody in the Big Sky runs like this. They want to be like Air Force. They want 484 yards rushing. Nobody else in this conference then us and maybe Northern Colorado wants to huck it. Everybody else wants to run the ball. This was a good deal for our defense to play against the nation's best rushing team. What a great way to begin your undergraduate career because it will never get harder than it was today.”
“We went in at halftime and said we are not changing a dang thing. You just have to play. It was a very intuitive game in the first half and second half for Kevin. How about Josh Hill, he played like the tight end we know he can be. There were some great catches by Finney over the middle.
On Next Three Weeks
“We are using this next three weeks to prepare ourselves for Sacramento State. If you look at the scoreboard to determine how good we are that is not what you need to do. You need to see how good we feel as a coaching staff and about how our young guys are coming around.”
“I thought our kicking game was excellent under Matt Troxel. He has a tough deal because I am interfering all the time. I interfered today twice and we made mistakes twice that cost us.”
On CJ Reyes
“The numbers that CJ Reyes will have as a punter will make us go David Harrington who. When you roll punt the ball stumbles and does not spiral. I am excited to have our fans go and say that is crazy.”
“I am proud to play against Air Force. Their offense is pretty good and their quarterback is pretty darn savvy.”