The UNI Panther football team racked up 466 yards of offense, including 362 yards in the air, but it wasn’t enough as top-ranked North Dakota State pulled off a 56-31 come-from-behind win Saturday in the UNI-Dome.
The Panthers took a 14-0 lead after scoring on the first two drives of the game, but NDSU rallied back and tied the game at 14 with 12:55 to play in the second quarter after an interception gave NDSU a short field.
The two teams traded scores, but UNI entered the half with a 24-21 lead after a 32-yard field goal from Austin Errthum as time expired.
NDSU took its first lead with 8:50 to play in the third quarter, but the Panthers regained the advantage on a 26-yard touchdown to Deion McShane as time expired in the third quarter. UNI entered the fourth with a 31-28 lead. It wouldn’t last long.
NDSU scored from the first play from scrimmage in the fourth quarter on a 75-yard touchdown pass.
UNI could not muster a response and NDSU scored three more times as the Panthers gave the Bison short fields with turnovers on downs.
The Panthers put up more points on the Bison than any team this season and the most since Nov. 4, 2017, when NDSU lost to South Dakota State 33-21 in Brookings.
The UNI offense shined against one of the toughest defenses in the FCS. Eli Dunne was 27-41 for 362 yards and three touchdowns, his best performance of the season.
Next Saturday, the Panthers travel to Vermilion, South Dakota, to face the South Dakota Coyotes South Dakota is 3-2 on the year and 2-0 in MVFC play after coming from behind to top Missouri State 35-28 at home. Saturday.
UNI Athletics Media Relations contributed to this report.