ROLLA, Mo. — Wayne State’s offense was unstoppable in the first half, and that proved to be a good thing.
The Wildcats raced to a 31-7 second-quarter advantage, then held on for dear life in the fourth quarter to dissuade a Missouri S&T comeback as the Wildcats came away with a 38-35 non-conference win over the Miners here Saturday night.
Playing a non-conference game for the first time since facing Nebraska-Kearney back in 2011, the Wildcats rolled up 398 yards in total offense in the first half and built a 38-14 lead heading into the locker room.
Wayne State scored on each of their first five possessions, starting with a 36-yard field goal by Boston Hensley for a 3-0 lead.
After a missed field goal by the home team, Wayne State went 80 yards in five plays, finishing with a 28-yard pass from Nick Bohn to Dawson Forgy for a 10-0 lead.
Wayne State made it 17-0 late in the first quarter when Bohn hit Jadon Johnson with a 27-yard touchdown pass, and the defense helped out with a turnover that the offense turned into points early in the second. Gerale Five’s interception set up a Bohn-to-Johnson connection from 39 yards out to make it 24-0 early in the second.
The Miners finally got on the board on the next drive, scoring on a short run by Cameren Smith to make it 24-7, but it only took two plays for the Wayne State offense to get that score back, as Bohn found Kendrick Watkins-Hogue for a 72-yard touchdown strike to make it 31-7.
Missouri S&T scored on a 26-yard pass from Tyler Gioia to Justis Braden, but Bohn hit on his fifth touchdown pass of the half, finding Trevor Marshall from 23 yards away to make it 38-14 at intermission.
Wayne State’s offense was stellar in the first 30 minutes, racking up 398 yards on only 31 plays. But the offense was not a factor in the second half as the Miners’ defense stepped up and helped the team come back to make the final few minutes interesting.
Missouri S&T scored on a pair of touchdown passes in the third to make it 38-28 early in the fourth quarter, then drove into Wildcat territory again before Tate Hinrich picked off a pass to end the drive.
The Miners got another opportunity at their own 13 with 1:18 to go and wuickly moved down the field, scoring with :19 to go to make it a three-point game. An onside kick was recovered by the Wildcats to end the game.
Bohn completed 19-of-25 passes for 378 yards and five TD’s. Johnson had five catches for 153 yards and two TD’s, all in the first half. Watkins-Hogue followed with four catches for 97 yards and one score.
Forgy and redshirt freshman Latravious Boyd each had 44 yards rushing in the contest while Boyd added four catches for 52 yards.
Jacob Byrd, Hinrichs and Dexter Larsen each had nine tackles for WSC with Hinrichs, Flye and Joe Morrison each recording interceptions.
The 3-1 Wildcats return to Northern Sun action this week, traveling to Minot State for a 1 p.m. contest on Saturday.