Brawl of the Wild 02

Montana State University running back Isaiah Ifanse attempts to get the ball through the University of Montana defense early in the third quarter of the game. The Bobcats won the rivalry match for the fourth year in a row. 

Bozeman was alive with energy Saturday, Nov. 23, as the Montana State University Bobcats pummeled the Griz 48-14. This is the University of Montana’s fourth Brawl of the Wild loss in a row. MSU’s head coach Jeff Choate is now 2-0 against UM head coach Bobby Hauck.

 “I like this game,” said Hauck after the game. “But I like it better when we win.” 

Bobcat Stadium was packed to the brim, giving Montana State a tremendous home field advantage. The crowd roared when Montana’s Samori Toure fumbled on the team’s first offensive play of the game. MSU’s Derek Marks recovered Toure’s fumble. He recovered Montana’s last-second fumble in the Brawl of the Wild last year.

The Griz continued to spiral as Montana State’s Kevin Kassis scored a touchdown, starting a 24-0 scoring run by Montana State. 

Montana’s Marcus Knight was finally able to stop UM’s scoring drought when he ran for a touchdown to cut the lead to 24-7.  MSU’s Isaiah Ifanse quickly responded to UM’s touchdown by running in a 38 yard touchdown of his own for MSU. Ifanse finished the game with 171 rushing yards and three touchdowns. 

After Ifanse gashed the defense, Montana was able to respond with Knight’s rushing touchdown bringing up the score to 31-14. He rushed for 77 yards and scored two touchdowns throughout the game. 

Knight’s touchdown was the last Montana score of the game. MSU missed a deep field goal to keep the halftime score at 31-14.

Montana was able to force MSU to punt on its first two drives of the second half, but MSU's offense wore the Griz defense down and scored 17 unanswered second-half points. 

MSU’s Brayden Konkol intercepted a pass from Dalton Sneed in the fourth quarter. Ifanse scored a touchdown after Konkol’s interception, the final score of the game.                                                 

When the clock hit zero and the scoreboard showed 48-14, hundreds of Montana State fans spilled onto the field. Security guards surrounded the stadiums goalposts so no MSU students could carry them downtown.

Montana State dominated offensively, rushing for 382 yards and passing for 106. Montana State’s defense also sacked UM quarterback Dalton Sneed six times. Montana was not able to force any turnovers in the game. Dante Olson led Montana’s defense with 18 total tackles in the game. 

When Konkol was asked when he knew that Montana State was going to win the game, he said “On Sunday last week after the UC Davis game.” Konkol had MSU’s lone interception in the game.

Montana State has won six of its last seven Brawl of the Wild games at home. Montana still leads the all-time rivalry series 70-46, with five ties. But since Montana State joined the NCAA, Montana only leads the series 32-30. 

Both UM and MSU play in the upcoming FCS playoffs, and the bracket will be revealed Nov. 24.