Taryn Christion threw for three touchdowns and ran for another score to lead South Dakota State in a 37-22 victory over Northern Iowa on Saturday in the FCS playoffs.
Fifth-seeded South Dakota State (10-2) avenged a 38-18 loss to Northern Iowa (8-5) on Oct. 14. The Jackrabbits have won six straight since then and will play in the quarterfinals against New Hampshire, who upset fourth-seeded Central Arkansas.
In the first half, Christion threw a 2-yard score to Cade Johnson, ran for a 21-yard touchdown, and floated a 28-yard pass to Dallas Goedert in the end zone just before halftime for a 26-7 lead.
Christion's 30-yard touchdown pass to Jacob Brown stretched the lead to 34-7 early in the fourth. Chase Vinatieri made three field goals, including a 55-yarder, for South Dakota State.
Eli Dunne threw for 287 yards and a 6-yard touchdown pass to Daurice Fountain for Northern Iowa. Jared Farley and Trevor Allen each had 1-yard touchdown runs in the fourth.
USD rally falls short against Sam Houston State
Jeremiah Briscoe threw four touchdowns — three to Davion Davis — and Corey Avery ran for two scores and No.6 seed Sam Houston State outlasted the University of South Dakota 54-42 on Saturday in the second-round of the FCS playoffs.
The Bearkats (11-1), who piled up 33 first downs and 708 yards of total offense and won their 20th straight home game, play host to Kennesaw State in the quarterfinals next weekend.
Briscoe was 28 of 43 for 505 yards and one interception. Davis had touchdown receptions of 44 and 13 yards in the first quarter and 12 yards in the final minute of the second quarter to produce a 41-14 lead. Davis had eight receptions for 131 yards and also scored on a 7-yard run in the second quarter.
Nathan Stewart had seven receptions for 180 yards and a 44-yard touchdown. Avery finished with 100 yards, surpassing 3,000 for his career, with his second 1-yard TD giving Sam Houston a 51-42 lead with 8:07 to play.
Chris Streveler was 33 for 54 for 520 yards and five touchdowns for the Coyotes (8-5) but was intercepted twice. Streveler broke the Missouri Valley passing record with 4,234 yards this season. He also ran 15 times for 51 yards and a TD. Brant Van Roekel had 11 catches for 234 yards, both career highs, and a touchdown. Streveler's final touchdown at 10:54 of the fourth quarter pulled South Dakota within 44-42.
South Dakota had 32 first downs and 637 yards on offense but turned the ball over on downs three times.